Thursday, April 23, 2009

Challenge - The Birth of Venus

Sandro Botticelli's painting, The Birth of Venus, was chosen this month for the Art Bead Scene's challenge.

My inspiration for this piece came not only from the gorgeous color palette of the painting but from Venus herself. It is presumed that a young woman named Simonetta Vespucci was the model for many of Botticelli's works (and the work of countless other artists as well), though most of them were painted long after her early death. Simonetta's beauty was considered the ideal in Renaissance times and it is believed that she had a cult-like following among both men and women. Since her reputation as a muse was already established I thought it might be fun to make a necklace that Simonetta might have worn. So it was with that in mind that I began this piece.

The two main focal beads of the necklace were made by me. The top piece utilizes a new porcelain blank that I am making that provides a foundation for any mixed media application. (Coming to RoundRabbitExtra soon!)

For this bead I started with a piece of beautiful scrapbook paper that had a subtle monochromatic floral design and adhered it to the porcelain. I stamped an architectural detail and then used pastel pencils to add color. The piece was then sprayed with a sealer several times. I love how the texture of the paper looks like canvas or even tapestry! Very fitting for a Renaissance era look.

This bird piece is a new design that I just began making. I made the mold from an antique button that is over 100 years old. I was pretty excited when I realized that the floral motif mimicked the flowers that are throughout the painting so I quickly glazed one in blue and giggled like a school girl when it came out of the kiln.

To further the Renaissance aesthetic I used (my currant favorite bead of the moment) these gorgeous pierced metal beads. They have such an ancient, religious feel and the antiqued copper color gave the necklace the dark tones that are found in the trees and foreground of the painting.

Finishing off the piece are vintage satin blue plastic faux pearls (rescued from a 1940s necklace that was falling apart), spiral seashell beads, my favorite Czech glass luster beads and wire wrapped copper rings with coral shell beads.

Now I just need to figure out how to travel back in time (my greatest desire) to give this necklace to Simonetta. Has anyone figured out how to do that yet? :)

14 comments:

peacockfairy said...

Lovely! Good job! Can't wait for those blanks, they sound great!

Lorelei said...

awesome necklace! captures the painting beautifully!!

I see you're not giving away the supplier for those incredibly cool pierced metal beads. hmmmm....

Erin said...

Stunning piece as always! I love how much thought you put into everything that you do. That's what I really admire about you. The porcelain blanks are a wonderful idea! Now, that's a way another artist can make one of your pieces truly their own! Brilliant!

SummersStudio said...

Wonderful and really works with the painting in both colour and design. I love that mixed media pendant!

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

Great piece...love the end piece color with the birds and leaves!

maryharding said...

Beautiful necklace--love the colors and textures and those great metal beads with your porcelain.

Stephanie said...

how pretty! Love all the blue!

bellajoya said...

I'm lovin' this necklace. It's really gorgeous, and I loved the way you made the toggle. Well done, and it goes nicely with the challenge.

jeweledrabbit/Maureen said...

I love what you did with the porcelain blank.

LLYYNN - Lynn Davis said...

Lovely work, pretty pretties! I've tagged you, Nancy, hope you have a chance to keep the MEME going!

LLYYNN - Lynn Davis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LLYYNN - Lynn Davis said...

Rats, I double-posted, pesky internet, LOL - but I wanted to ask did you mean to title this one the BRITH of Venus ... or BIRTH of Venus ... I've been trying to figure out what the secret meaning would be for BRITH of Venus all day, LOL.

The Noisy Plume: said...

OH MY GOSH!!!!!!
http://www.flickr.com/photos/28057482@N05/3326347350/
I totally visited that muse a couple of months ago:))))))

LOVE how yours turned out!
XO

disa said...
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