Original Medium: Watercolors on Watercolor Board
Original Size: 9×12 inches
Year of Completion: 2007
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This centaur shoots stars into the sky. It is the first painting in the zodiac series, representing the feminine form of Sagittarius.
While researching mythology, I have come to identify with this image as she is an archer, but even moreso after discovering a connection with the first name Lindsay, which is Scottish and derived from the linden tree. In many cultures the linden tree is associated with peace an protection, “under linden” actually meaning under protection. In Greece and Poland, linden was a symbol of divine power and love. But in Greek myth the linden tree has its ties to the centaur.
Philyra was a nymph who was loved by the Titan Kronos. When his wife Rhea came upon their affair, Kronos quickly transformed himself into a stallion to hide. As a result, Philyra gave birth to the centaur, Kheiron (also spelled in some places with a C). To ease her shame, Kronos transformed Philyra into a linden tree. Her son Kheiron, became the eldest and wisest of the Centaurs. He was a great teacher, mentoring Greek heroes of myth including Jason and Achilles. Upon Kheiron’s death he gave up his immortality (as he was the son of a god) and was placed in the stars as Sagittarius. Philyra’s name is the origin of the Greek word for brotherly love.
November 22 – December 21