As today is payday for me I needed to get the book sent away to be printed. The exhibition opens in less than 2 weeks and I am beginning to feel the pressure. I have produced a section of text to sit in front of the book which reads below;
“A circle is the reflection of eternity. It has no beginning and it has no end…”
Maynard James Keenan
Strata Florida Abbey was founded in 1164 by a colony led by Abbot David, who was charged to establish a religious house in Ceredigion. For years the Cistercian abbey became the heart of religious life in Ceredigion, until the Suppression of the Monasteries Act was passed in 1536. Strata Florida escaped the suppression for a couple of years, but only by paying substantial sums of money to the Crown. Having been taken into the King’s hands (King Henry VIII) and re-surveyed, the church commissioners dissolved Strata Florida in 1539. The buildings and their contents were valued and sold off, and the church and most of the ancillary buildings were demolished for construction materials. The refectory and dormitory were rebuilt as Ty Abaty, a house for the local gentry. Most of the former monastic lands of the Cistercian abbey were given to Thomas Cromwell, 1st Earl of Essex, who subsequently sold them on. After the Dissolution Strata Florida was left to deteriorate, and it was not until the late 19th Century that it was rediscovered, which led to huge excavations on the site to discover the remains we may see today.
The book mainly features images from the tiles at Strata Florida Abbey, where i have looked at each tile and shot it so that the exquisite detail can been seen in the slither of area that is in focus. I have also looked at the colour and slightly dulled it down just so there are slight hues but nothing too bright.
I chose to use the circle in my work in order to reflect the eternal nature of Christian beliefs that would have been the cornerstone of religious teaching. The circle is known throughout Christendom as being a holy symbol. Its meaning, traditions and origins date back to the earliest times, where the majority of people could not read or write. Art was the only way to provide a clear picture of what was a significant religious symbol. The circle in a Christian world represents eternity. There is no beginning or end to it, which makes it divine and complete.
There is one other paragraph that I would like to keep under wraps for now as it really talks about my work and how I feel it has progressed over the semester.
The title of this book is;
An Eternity of Spheres