marlene mountain
painting series 22
marija influence

Marija Alseikaite Gimbutas

It was not until 1986 that I became aware of Marija Gimbutas'
To see so many incredible female symbols/designs--the actuality of
them--was not only awe-inspiring but self-regenerating.
Although I was caught up in the extraordinary symbolism
my first attraction was to the outward simplicity.
I wanted to embrace my amazing past and was inspired to choose
some of the 'minimal' images and flood them with color.
This became the painting series,
she is one and she is two: signs from the ancient.

(August, September 1986.)

I was also a little late in coming to THE LANGUAGE OF THE GODDESS
The art, the meanings, the information!
I thought I knew much of the world's art. But nothing
compares to the Neolithic (with special homage to the women artists
of the Paleolithic). Actually, here it all is--the source of all art
that would follow--deeply ingrained in our genes.

The painting series, birdy the topless neolithic bird shevinity, was created
from July through September, 1993.
I copied images and tests from Gimbutas' books directly and indirectly
through collage on seventy 11 x 17" Exact Vellum Bristol papers.
On these, like a student, I underlined passages in colored inks,
commented and even doodled in the margins and over
the texts. Many of the Neolithic images are painted and crayoned
in reds, purples, greens, and iridescents.

Through all this, 'birdy,' who found me reading about 'witches houses,'
took us on a journey through our wonderful and real-life past.
We then watched patriarchy intrude and supposedly take over.
But the many personalities of 'birdy' began gathering
and overwhelmed the images of destruction.
We came out, full-circle, singing
'a river of birds in migration a nation of women with wings'
in honor of Marija and her incredible gift to the universe.

Marija Gimbutas has almost given us too much to know.
What would happen if all females of the world were given these books,
this knowledge of ourselves?
We'd have 'shevolution' overnight!

'marija the most important being in the universe'
a 'sheku' (female haiku) written in July 1993.

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