Much Love Monday

This week for Much Love Monday, I love the simple tasks of the village and heroism. Such a combination of thoughts would not have occurred to me on their own, were it not through the folk art of the Greek painter Theophilos Hatzimihail. The subjects he addressed were primarily those.
But what makes this artist even more fascinating is that he would wander from town to town, painting only in exchange for bread. In one place he painted at, he slept in the hollow of an old sycamore. We all speak of unfettered freedom, but few are the souls who can content themselves with such a meagre lifestyle. This is one of the reasons he is so loved by many. (P.S. Do you see the heart shape in his fez?)

 Elements: star paper, rose, ric rac, ledger paper: pugly pixel;
frames including heart frame: minitoko;

He would also wear the Greek kilt, the fustanella, which many mocked him for, and caused him to have a rather hard time in Smyrna. What a deliberate choice of dress for a young man whose grandfather didn't love him, thinking he was retarded because he was not good at school and left handed. His grandfather would not let him join him in his hagiography, afraid he would ruin the icons. However, he gleaned from his grandfather how to mix paints using nutshells and flowers.
It is said that his life was a constant celebration.
His well-preserved paintings are vibrantly coloured. He would depict the stories he gathered in village centres (where the school, church and cafe were situated) and from postcards and newspaper clippings on the hundreds and hundreds of walls he painted all over Greece.
A room on exhibit at the Museum of Greek Folk Art in Athens reveals that he painted rooms in their entirety: including ceilings (pictured below) and window casings.
One professor thinks that Theophilos saw himself in Alexander the Great, who he painted many, many times throughout his life. The professor muses that Alexander the Great "expresses the past and foresees the future." (You can see this interview, and more, in this film.) What a beautiful comment.
I am perhaps a Romantic at heart, but I can happily envision a future that rests on village heroism. Do you know what I mean?
Elements: frame: minitoko; starburst shape and glitter: pugly pixel;
icon of modern design clock: curbly

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