Today, I'm sharing with you a piece entitled 'Lunulae'. I created it late last year, having used my new found free time to learn about gold leaf and experimenting, seeing where it would lead. It was an absolute pleasure to create, working intuitively as I mostly do, but bringing in real gold. There is something utterly beautiful about using gold leaf...it is so delicate, your mere breath can have it all over the place! So you need to be ever so still, and focused...and that is pleasurable and calming. I love the way the light catches the gold, which has been sealed well to avoid tarnishing through oxidation. (Another thing I learned!)
When it was finished, and I stepped back, I could see a Celtic Torc or Lunulae, a piece of pure gold ceremonial neckwear worn by my Celtic ancestors. Below, you can see what a torc looks like, some were simple and others more elaborate. The two beautiful pieces below are from the National Museum of Ireland collection.
In Europe, the earliest evidence for goldworking dates to the fifth millennium BC. By the end of the third millennium goldworking had become well established in Ireland and Britain together with a highly productive copper and bronzeworking industry.
While we do not know precisely how the late Neolithic people of Ireland became familiar with metalworking, it is clear that it was introduced as a fully developed technique. Essential metalworking skills must have been introduced by people already experienced at all levels of production. I love how this creativity crossed cultures and became something new in Ireland. Just as we are heading into something new and unknown and we can do good with it, or not. We are in a place of potential, of choice. A birthing place and the labour pains can be difficult. We can see it as opportunity to grow and evolve into something better, rather than striving to clutch onto something that has passed.
These pieces would have been very heavy around the neck and it is presumed that they were worn for ceremonial purposes. I can't help imagining the scenes....the cloaks and fabrics of the clothing these people wore, the ceremonies and rituals in which they engaged, the crackling of open fires and the whisper of the wind across a land that had yet to be tilled. I can feel these people's connection to the land and to the stars as is evidenced in the buildings of their time which were often aligned perfectly to the stars, from Newgrange to the stone circles....there was wisdom there. There was connection...and something else I cannot name.
I recently found myself in the German soldier graveyard in Glencree, Co Wicklow, which is not far from me. It's a beautiful and serene place with a high energy and a grotto to the sacred feminine. This graveyard is for German soldiers who died in Ireland during both world wars, either through their planes crashing, or in British Prisoner of War Camps from WWI. I sat with them. We smoked a cigarette together. They are all aged between 19 and 24. Some mother's sons. It broke my heart. It was apparent looking at these stones, the absolute futility of war and how easily we can become divided through manipulation and ideology. I asked them for their wisdom too.
In current times, it can be powerful and helpful to reflect on your ancestry, the many who have come before you, all they have lived through and survived. See them stand in a line behind you, stretching back as far as the eye can see. All of these spirits that came before us. Ask for their wisdom to come to you. On my YouTube channel 'Healing Creations' there is a free meditation on connecting to your ancestors if you would like to try it.
This piece 'Lunulae' measures 70cm x 70cm, acrylic and sealed gold leaf on Italian deep edge canvas. It is available for sale and costs 1,200 Euro and as always, I am always open to people paying in instalments. Pop me an email if you would like to give it its forever home.
Mandala Artist and Healer based in Dublin, Ireland. www.healingcreations.ie