Portfolio > Oracles of Nature

Lady Iliad:
Color Film : 35mm
Summer 2012

This image was originally inspired by Sir John Everett Millais' Ophelia:
It was not the image but the story behind the creation of the Ophelia Painting between 1851-1852 that led me to create Lady Iliad.

Millais hired Elizabeth Siddal to pose for Ophelia, a character from William Shakespeare's play Hamlet, singing before she drowns in a river in Denmark.

then 19 years old. Millais had Siddal lie fully clothed in a full bathtub in his studio at 7 Gower Street in London. As it was now winter, he placed oil lamps under the tub to warm the water, but was so intent on his work that he allowed them to go out. As a result, Siddal subsequently was hospitalized with pneumonia.

Millais paid medical expenses but Siddal eventually perished because of the weaknesses to her body from the illness.

After reading this story in artistic history, I decide to create an image that would be the resurrection Ophelia: an entitle it, Lady Illiad. Dedicated to all the women that have sacrificed their lives for great art. The Iliad, Homers Epic an invocation to the Muses and to balance out a series of miseries or disastrous events and have a woman in gold rising from the water.

I surveyed the location so the light and tree shadows would be healing and mysterious. I created a rock mini bridge to stand on to be able to capture the entire form without distortion.

I asked Sanja Lukac to model for me- the water was warm. The fabric she is adorned in is from India (1920's) all hand sewn embroidered silk with gold and cerulean blue sequins. Sequins were being used as decoration on clothing or paraphernalia in the Indus Valley as early as 2500BC.

Much time and thought goes into staging a piece of art so it pays the right tribute.

Thank you for reading

Lady Iliad
Lady Iliad
35mm Color Film
16x20
2017