THE PARABLE OF PYGMALION
Ever since the early Greek theater, various versions of the Pygmalion myth have come down to us in many minor and some major treatments. The last super production that I know of was MY FAIR LADY on Broadway, traveling every where, and a Hollywood movie. However, frequent local versions, some raucous and less than playfully sarcastic, emphasize aspects of the legend that might, or might not, seem latent in the myth.
Pygmalion created a sculpture of a woman so beautiful that he fell in love with her. It is easy for me to assume that he developed a considerable intimacy while chiseling her into the shape he desired. And I also know of several such versions where the time, energy, and effort -- and dreaming during the process of creation are not unfamiliar, even to an untalented novice. In another version, a god finds her quite desirable, as Greek gods often did, and hustles her, ?body and soul,? off to the realm of the gods. Her name was Galatea, but it is not well known and requires a bit of "searching" to find.
So, having spent much of my life in Portland, Oregon, Seattle, Washington, and The Hague, Netherland, I felt that a heavy rain should be a part of "beaming her up." Also I feel and imagine that I can make out her caring for an infant, perhaps my own contribution to this ancient story, both of them dissolving, becoming amorphous.
My main problem with this tale is its lack of attention and concern for poor artist Pygmalion, bereft of his greatest creation! No doubt worth a major portion of his life and being.
So what if his masterpiece so attracted a god to just take her? None of the Henny Youngman jokes: "Now, take my wife . . . PAAAUULLEEEZE!"
I believe that one can find reasons to consider several "meanings and morals" latent here. I just want to mention the one most pertinent right now with the viral OCCUPY movement! It seems quite clear to me that this century the Greek, and then Roman, gods represent the obscenely wealthy 1%. Us regular Earthlings, by far the greatest number of people, have so much less. Besides wealth and aristocratic ancestery, few person, can rise into the top 1%. Perhaps most likely are women who are physically attractive acording to current tastes.
BUT should an imaginative person actually invent something economically promising, then the Way-Upper class watch the development and if the product, sevice, whatever seems proven and the kinks worked out of it, some person or corporation in the 1% grabs it up -- of course the inovator will receive what seems to us a large amount of money at that time, maybe some little royalties, too. But then the corporations develop the new service or product, eventually even world-wide! Basically, THEY JUST TAKE IT!!! So, for Pygmalion and Galatea. His work and his love gone!
But poor artist Pygmalion receives only an everlasting, though slight, recognition of his name -- a name ripe for classmates to have ridiculed. I surely would guess -- I keep assuming that the lady loves life among the gods and their capers -- that Pygmalion's painful loss is Galatea's great gain.
If you see and feel this painting in some other way -- or, indeed, do not see any relationship here between the art and the artichokes I write about, well, I welcome disagreements publicly displayed as comments, preferably in cultured language. Replies, $0.03 US.
Peace, etc., Bruce
Artwork For Sale
||abstract acrylic canvas wood frame colors wrap around obscure figure(s) dull red background \"x\" shaped figure (s) fill most of the canvas vague blue fading to white is most of the canvas rain drops. Bruce Combs Combs. (Item# 296534)
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