Remembering our War Hero’s and what they fought for!
Painting by RESO914 #reso914 #ryanedward #ryanbaker
Remembering our War Hero’s and what they fought for!
Painting by RESO914 #reso914 #ryanedward #ryanbaker
Last week I went to the “Heavenly Bodies” Exhibit at the Cloister’s in Upper Manhattan. My son, his girlfriend, and I visited this Fashion Exhibit of the “Catholic Imagination” on a spur of the moment adventure. Although I have been going to the Cloister’s since I was very young, this was one of the most exciting exhibits I have experienced.
“Heavenly Bodies” features the work of many Designers’ whose work is based on the own interpretations, imaginations, and relationship to Catholicism. Their designs were influenced by their own imagery and symbolism, using as a reference specific garments worn by the Clergy and Religious Orders, hence “Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”. An example is Versace’s interpretive designs of the various Medieval Religious Orders.
For those who know of the Cloister’s, which overlooks the Hudson River; much of the architecture used in the construction in the early 1930’s. was from many Gothic and Medieval structures, Paintings, Statues, and Tapestries, many of which are over 800 years old. The Cloister’s features various rooms with antiquities from the Romanesque Period (500-1500 `AD); Gothic Era (1500’s); to the Medieval Period of Art and Structures; all of which are reflected throughout the “Heavenly Bodies” Exhibit.
With these images in mind, I will share many of the Designer’s Fashions shown throughout the Monastery, many of which I will compare with the iconic works of art, which are a part of the Cloisters.
One of my favorites, and most popular Exhibit is Alexander McQueen’s Red Velvet gown, entitled “The Annunciation”; inspired by the “Annunciation Triptych” (1427) which is just to the right of the Gown.
Weddings also played an important part during these Monastic periods. Featured are many of the interpretations by these iconic Designers.
As one enters the Cloister’s Romanesque rooms, designed using part of a French Benedictine Monastery, including the original Monastic Columns from an 804 AD Benedictine Monastery and Romanesque Cloister’s. All this inspiring Designers from the House of Valentino, using various Black fabrics, Velvet, Silk, based on the Nuns habits worn during this period. One Black Dress & Cape with the Gold Stars is based on the Painting “Black Madonna of Czechoslovakia”.
In the Early Gothic Hall with its 15th Century Stained Glass Windows, Statues, and Paintings of the Madonna and Child, in the center stands the fashion inspiration by the Designer, Gaultier titled “Lumiere”. Note the Virgin and Child on the shoulder of this colorful Stained-Glass Dress.
My earliest memories of the Cloisters’ was the large room of Medieval Tapestries. Obviously, Alexander McQueen was inspired as I was by the beauty and design of these Tapestries, in his “Angels &Demons” Collection. His designs reflect the work found in many of the Tapestries hanging on the Walls.
The Gothic Chapel is well known for its original 13th Century 7 Sarcophagus’ (tombs) carved in the likeness of the various Counts, Knights, who fought for the Crusades, and the Baroness of Neubourg. The Designer, John Galliano, was inspired with his Design Gown with a Cross resembling the Crosses carried during the Crusades.
The Late Gothic Hall is filled with many Medieval Sculpture and Altar pieces. Adorning the entranceway to the Late Gothic Hall is a beautiful Gold Wedding Dress with a Gold Jeweled Crown designed by Dolce & Gabbanna.
While this beautifully, artistic work of the Designers whose work is featured in the “Heavenly Bodies” Cloister’s Exhibit, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MOMA) also presented many more of these Designs of the “Catholic Imagination” of “Heavenly Bodies” among the Art at the Museum. Many of the fashions explored the designer’s “imagination” of the transcendence from earth to the spiritual. One example featured at MOMA is the Designer, Thierry Mugler’s “ Madonna” with its sparkling pale Blue Dress and Crown at the top of an archway, representing Mary’s Ascension into Heaven.
Although many may not understand these fashions in the traditional sense, they illuminate the many ways that one’s imagination can transcend those of the Catholic Church’s view into enchanting “Heavenly Bodies”. What I have shown is just a small example of the many fashions being exhibited at the Cloister’s and the Museum of Modern Art.
At exactly 8:46 am EST, it will be 17 years since the tragic events of 9/11. I ask that today be a Day of Reflection not just of September 11, 2011 and the many lives lost; but a reflection of how our World as knew it then, has changed into a World of so many lives lost since then fighting for our Freedom.
Let us never forget the over 3,000 lives lost that day. Eventually since that time we have lost more lives, those who so dedicatedly rushed to the Trade Center as the more than 1,000 First Responder’s, many of whom have since lost their own lives.
Last Fall, I visited the World Trade Center as it today. With the “Freedom Tower”, what made the most impression on me was the “Reflection Pools” surrounded by the names of each person lost that day, as well as the over 700 bones they have yet to identify.
For more Reflections on this “Day of Remembrance” as I listen to the tolling bells for each person lost. Attached is a link to my previous article (written last year on Sept 11, 2016).
The Lotus Flower figures prominently into much of the Eastern Religions. In Buddhism, the Purple Lotus is particularly significant.
The Purple Lotus is considered the mystic lotus and is not as commonly seen as the other lotus flower colors. Usually depicted as either a bud, or in bloom revealing the heart, they may appear on a single, triple or quintuple stem, and the eight petals represent the Noble Eight fold Path of Buddhism, and can be found in virtually every representation of deities, where they are often portrayed sitting or standing on a lotus, or holding one. The symbolism of the lotus is related to how it rises from muck and, while its roots are in the mud, it stills lies beautifully on the water. This is an image of enlightenment.
Hybrid Red Tea Roses
Today it is officially Summer – the “Summer Solstice” the longest day of the year began at 6:07 am EST. “Summer Solstice” means “when the Sun stands still”, when the Northern Hemisphere reaches its highest point closest to the Sun.
One thing I look forward to each year are the many blossoming Roses at the New York Botanical Gardens Rose Garden Exhibit. The Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden is among one the most popular exhibits at the Botanical Gardens from May to October, when more than 700 varieties of Roses are in peak bloom. Sunday, was just the perfect day to visit the New York Botanical Gardens, located in the Bronx, NY. Before entering the Gardens, one can view them from atop of a hill which overlooks the “fairy tale” beauty of the Rose Gardens.
The month of June produces the most vibrant and fragrant roses. The first weekend in June, in which the Gardens officially open, the many Roses are in full bloom! The hundreds of Roses planted include heirloom varieties selected for their intoxicating perfumes as well as their beauty. Even before reaching the Rose Gardens, we were entranced by the sweet scents filling the air! The various species range from Roses exhibiting “Archduke Charles” China Roses, dating back to 1837, and the “Burgundian Cluster Roses from the 1600’s; to 2017’s “Miracle on the Hudson” in honor of Capt. Sullenberger, each with their own true beauty of color and fragrance!
Designed by landscape architect Beatrix Farrand in 1916, this Garden was completed in 1988 with the support of David Rockefeller and named after his wife Peggy, a horticulturalist and conservationist who loved roses. The Rose Garden has received many International Awards and is considered to be among one of the world’s best, and most beautiful of Rose Gardens’. There is even a special Tea Rose named after Peggy Rockefeller. The architect also erected a Gazebo in the center of the Rose Gardens, adorned with Pink and White Climbing Roses, called “Awakening”.
Hybrid “Tea Roses” bear one rose on each stem, and the vast majority of the flowers have a strong fragrance, many of which have been named after well known celebrities (note the roses shown below). The “Peggy Roosevelt” Rose Garden produces highly fragranced golden-yellow roses, in flushes throughout the Summer Season.
Single Lavender Rose: “Purple Rain”
Walking along the many pathways winding throughout the Garden’s, my friend and I came across so many beautiful, unique varieties and species of Roses. I think we managed to photograph almost everyone, many of which are showcased in my article of the Rose Gardens.
The inner most pathways of the Gardens exhibit more modern hybrids of Roses, while the outer perimeters along the wrought iron fencing, enhanced by the beauty of hundreds’ of “natural, wild species” (or old roses) in a purely naturalistic setting. The cluster of Pink/Purple Roses along the back fence (shown below) are called “Cinqo de Mayo”, for it lovely vibrant colors!
As we were leaving this scenic presentation of Roses, my friend Susan, (a friend since elementary school!), and I couldn’t resist taking photos of ourselves under the Trellis covered with “Alexander Girault” rambling roses!
|“In Flander’s Fields” is a poem dedicated to the many fallen Soldier’s during World War I. The symbol of the “Poppy Flower” refers to the abundance of Poppy’s that grew in “Flander’s Fields”, which was a cemetery used during World War I.
“We are the Dead. Short days ago
…..an excerpt from the Poem
“In Flander’s Fields by Colonel John McCrae
As today is Memorial Day, while many people are celebrating with barbeques’ (hamburgers/hotdogs, etc); partying with friends and family; how many, while partying, actually think of the true meaning of Memorial Day. The first Memorial Day was celebrated on May 5, 1868, just after the Civil War. This was a day to honor the many Soldiers and Veterans who fought for our Country.
When growing up, I had always wondered why I always saw Vet’s wearing a Poppy flower in their lapels on Memorial Day, always celebrated on the last Monday in May. Many times I have received a Poppy Flower from one of these Vet’s, never knowing the symbolism of it’s true meaning. I have always loved the vibrant color of the Poppy Flower, but now I have a different respect of the flower when I see a “Field of Poppy’s”.
The origin of the symbolism of the Poppy Flowers goes back to the Civil War, where Colonel John McCrae was inspired by a Field of Poppies growing among the many bodies scattered across the battlefield.
“Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun”
What better way to celebrate Spring’s final warmth than George Harrison’s “Here Comes the Sun”! He wrote this song on a Spring Day after a long, cold English Winter. Well after a long, cold, snowy Winter in NY, I thought his lyrics were a perfect compliment to the Photography I took yesterday showing the first signs of Spring!
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sailaway from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain
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