Rare self-portrait of a medieval artist
While a lot of medieval manuscripts with colourful drawings survive, we are usually not shown the artists who decorated the pages. This image is therefore exceptional, because it does. In fact, we see him drawing the decorated letter that contains, well, himself! This is, in other words, a rare medieval self-portrait. The artist shows himself surrounded by paraphernalia of the trade, such as brushes and pots of paint. He even puts his name next to himself, which is atypical for the usually modest monks of the age: “Frater Rufillus”, who was a monk in Weissenau abbey in Ravensburg, Germany, near the end of the 12th century. We catch Rufillus putting the finishing touches on the letter R: the last stroke by a proud monk, who couldn’t help but showing himself to the world.
Pic: Cologny, Collection Martin Bodmer, MS 127 (12th century). More information about (and the full facsimile of) this manuscript here.
“ Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again. And what do we teach our children? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique. In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you. Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move. You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven. You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel. And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is, like you, a marvel? You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children. ”
Pablo Picasso (via worldpaintings)
I can spend hours in his online gallery, drooling and sighing.
Featured in this post:
- Tristezze della luna.
- Prigione di lacrime.
- Impalpabili Tracce dal Cielo.
- La Nascita della Sirena.
Meet the Golden Alphabet Book, a very rare miniature book from 1846 that teaches parents how to handle their children (in only 126 pages). It also contains rhymes, perhaps meant for reading by the kids themselves. Each letter is presented in a decorated woodcut, and the object measures no more than 3/4 by 3/4 inch (or 18x18mm), about the size of a thumb nail. Books are not often this small, and you can see why: not much text fits on the page, which is also exceedingly difficult to flip. Still, it’s quite simply charming - Watch that avenue now! - and it put a big smile on my face.
Pic: more pics in this blog.
It may not be Monday, but here is a miniature book from Erik Kwakkel!
I want to say I’ve always espoused these rules (via), but the past two years have cemented them into my being. Realizing all seven of these things (and a few more) have helped me heal the way I have, and jump into a wonderful life right now that I love so much.
Not a fan of silly “inspirational quotes” but I found this to be so, so important. For me, it’s the “comparing your life” part that is the hardest to let go…