Friday, January 01, 2016

Doorway to Eternity: Part 16


The Colma Necropolis is located outside of San Francisco and is a vast city of souls for about 1.5 million people sleep within the gates of its sixteen cemeteries. Although the Necropolis was founded in 1924, entire church graveyards and neighborhood cemeteries predating the 1900s were relocated to Colma, from San Francisco.

Today, the cemeteries contain burial grounds, columbaria, private and public mausoleums, chapels and a treasure trove of hidden art. Within the gates of the various cemeteries can be found priceless stained glass windows, hand carved monuments, and beautifully engraved metal doorways into private mausoleums. Several of the hand engraved private mausoleum doors captivated me with their intricate beauty & spiritual symbolism. During a recent visit to the Necropolis I captured several images of them, which I will be posting.


In essence the doors were made to be portals into spirit, doorways into eternity and entrances to private chambers, where loved ones could find consolation.  Many of the crypts are deteriorating with age and much of the beauty Tiffany glass has disappeared sadly due to theft. My visit was a rare opportunity to view the vanishing art of the Necropolis and an opportunity to share what I found with others. Although this is funeral art; in the end it is simply art with the capability of transcending death.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

A Study of a Lotus

The water lily is perhaps the most poetic flower that exists and is known as Nymphaea; an aquatic plant in the family Nymphaeaceae. They are opulent with iridescent colors and dream their hours away in their watery gardens. Some water lilies open under reflected sunlight and sink beneath the water at twilight, while other species such as the Egyptian white water lily seek moonlight. Should you be so fortunate as to view one in perfect bloom it will intoxicate you with its bewitching beauty and leave an indelible watery impression of the other world upon you. 

The water lily was inspired by the nymphs of Greek and Latin mythology and the lotus often appears in Hindu and Buddhist stories as well. Terra-cotta plaques from the 12th century depict the goddess Asherah holding two lotus blossoms. Ivory panels from. Long ago show the god Horus seated on a lotus blossom. The sacredness of the flower is illustrated by its frequent reference to Buddha. When Buddha walked the earth he left lotuses in his trail instead of footprints. The phrase "Om mani padme hum," which used in meditation means "the jewel in the lotus" refers to the Buddha or to the mystical union of male and female energies.

The water lily studies that I am presenting in this series were captured in 2014 at the: UC Botanical Garden, San Francisco Botanical Garden, The Pool of Enchantment outside of the De Young Museum and The Conservatory of Flowers, SF.



Red lotus
This symbolizes the original nature of the heart (hrdaya). It is the lotus of love, compassion, passion, activity and all the qualities of the heart. It is the lotus of Avalokitesvara. http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/history/b_lotus.htm





Tuesday, December 29, 2015

bathing in ivory petals said Princess Haiku



This is one of the flowers that I captured in the dahlia garden in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco this year. The garden was a gift from the San Francisco Dahlia Society. Thanks to the volunteers who presented the City of San Francisco and its visitors with such a wondrous garden.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

a flower named epiphany said, Princess Haiku



This is one of the flowers that I captured in the dahlia garden in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco this year. The garden was a gift from the San Francisco Dahlia Society. Thanks to the volunteers who presented the City of San Francisco and its visitors with such a wondrous garden.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Study of a Water Lily


The water lily is perhaps the most poetic flower that exists and is known as Nymphaea; an aquatic plant in the family Nymphaeaceae. They are opulent with iridescent colors and dream their hours away in their watery gardens. Some water lilies open under reflected sunlight and sink beneath the water at twilight, while other species such as the Egyptian white water lily seek moonlight. Should you be so fortunate as to view one in perfect bloom it will intoxicate you with its bewitching beauty and leave an indelible watery impression of the other world upon you. 

The water lily was inspired by the nymphs of Greek and Latin mythology and the lotus often appears in Hindu and Buddhist stories as well. Terra-cotta plaques from the 12th century depict the goddess Asherah holding two lotus blossoms. Ivory panels from. Long ago show the god Horus seated on a lotus blossom. The sacredness of the flower is illustrated by its frequent reference to Buddha. When Buddha walked the earth he left lotuses in his trail instead of footprints. The phrase "Om mani padme hum," which used in meditation means "the jewel in the lotus" refers to the Buddha or to the mystical union of male and female energies.

The water lily studies that I am presenting in this series were captured in 2014 at the: UC Botanical Garden, San Francisco Botanical Garden, The Pool of Enchantment outside of the De Young Museum and The Conservatory of Flowers, SF.



Pink lotus
This is the supreme lotus, generally reserved for the highest deity, sometimes confused with the white lotus it is the lotus of the historical Buddha.

http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/history/b_lotus.htm







Sunday, December 13, 2015

a solstice darling said, Princess Haiku



This is one of the flowers that I captured in the dahlia garden in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco this year. The garden was a gift from the San Francisco Dahlia Society. Thanks to the volunteers who presented the City of San Francisco and its visitors with such a wondrous garden.

Friday, December 04, 2015

Door to Eternity: Part 15


The Colma Necropolis is located outside of San Francisco and is a vast city of souls for about 1.5 million people sleep within the gates of its sixteen cemeteries. Although the Necropolis was founded in 1924, entire church graveyards and neighborhood cemeteries predating the 1900s were relocated to Colma, from San Francisco.

Today, the cemeteries contain burial grounds, columbaria, private and public mausoleums, chapels and a treasure trove of hidden art. Within the gates of the various cemeteries can be found priceless stained glass windows, hand carved monuments, and beautifully engraved metal doorways into private mausoleums. Several of the hand engraved private mausoleum doors captivated me with their intricate beauty & spiritual symbolism. During a recent visit to the Necropolis I captured several images of them, which I will be posting.


In essence the doors were made to be portals into spirit, doorways into eternity and entrances to private chambers, where loved ones could find consolation.  Many of the crypts are deteriorating with age and much of the beauty Tiffany glass has disappeared sadly due to theft. My visit was a rare opportunity to view the vanishing art of the Necropolis and an opportunity to share what I found with others. Although this is funeral art; in the end it is simply art with the capability of transcending death.