Friday, December 21, 2007

The Lure of Sirens and Mermaids

As the oceans rise, the lure of the sea, its myths and legends, grows... no lesser than that of the voice of the feminine. I am always reminded of the image drawn by Milo Minara for Greenpeace, which I used as one of the first handouts to attract New Yorkers to the Eco-Saloon... glimses of Darryl Hannah... and look who she is now.

Seduction and the Secret Power of Women: The Lure of Sirens and Mermaids

Since antiquity, Sirens and their mermaid sisters have maintained an ongoing affair of the heart with humanity’s greatest writers and artists. Sirens play important roles in the classical writings of Homer and Euripides, as well as in the modern works of James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, W. B. Yeats, and many others. Matching these writings with vibrant work from such artists as Peter Paul Rubens, Hieronymous Bosch, Edvard Munch, and RenĂ© Magritte, Meri Lao has created a feast for the eye. Exploring our 3,000-year-old relationship with Sirens, Lao reveals the secret of the power in their song: it is the sound of the subversive, luring us from the orderly conscious world down to the depth of the world of dreams, and the harder we try to ignore that singing, the more we desperately want to hear it.

Meri Lao composed the music for Federico Fellini’s masterpiece City of Women. She lives in Rome.

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