Monday, April 8, 2013

Springtime Brings... Happy Harpies!

It's Springtime, yayyy! So I want you to stretch your arms way up in the air like a tree and then I want you to stretch your imagination and think.... Harpy! Why? Because our amazingly creative workshop instructor Clarissa Callesen will be teaching  Happy Harpies in just a few weeks at Art and Soul in Virginia Beach ...and there are still spots left in the class!!  Come play and make your very own Harpy — or maybe we should start calling them Bird Goddesses. Take a look at what her class is all about. Take it away Clarissa....

I seem to be kind of obsessed with the image of a woman’s face on a bird body or a Harpy.  But Mythologically speaking or in modern slang, the Harpy’s reputation is not a pretty one.

–noun, plural -pies.
1. Classical Mythology. a ravenous, filthy monster having a woman's head and a bird's body.
2. (lowercase) a scolding, nagging, bad-tempered woman; shrew.
3. (lowercase) a greedy, predatory person.

However in earlier Greek mythology, Harpies were described as beautiful, winged  maidens. So what happened? I have some feminist theories about what happen, but alas this blog is actually about art. I have been making lots of Harpies lately and it has been an image that has been in my sketch books for years.

No matter what materials you start with, these magical creatures always end up with very distinct personalities. One of the many reasons I love creating them! 

 Assemblage Harpy made with a porcelain doll head on a fake crow body, made this past Spring.  


This one's made from a vintage composite doll head with eyes that blink,
on a tacky Christmas bird decoration  


A slightly scarier Harpy made of a composite Virgin Mary head,
with wings made out of gut stretched over wire. 

  And my Geisha Harpy made from a doll head that I had from my childhood.

Wow! Thanks, Clarissa! Pretty cool stuff, huh? My mind has taken flight, thinking of all the wonderful objects I can repurpose into a fascinating bird assemblage! So be sure and check out Clarissa's Happy Harpies workshop, as well as the other amazing classes she'll be teaching at Virginia Beach Art & Soul... and then sign up to play! Hurry... the deadline for registration is April 22nd, and this event takes place April 24th-28th! Tweet! Tweet! 

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