|Time, Death and Judgement
The figure of Judgement is interesting. I'm used to seeing Judgement blindfolded, but this time her face is hidden by her arm, so she does not see us and we do not see her, just her scales, the ever-present judgement that will apply to each of us. There is a definite feeling of forward motion as we stand before the image, as if at any point they will reach us and we will be harvested and then judged, Watts obviously feeling that our most important judgement happening after we are dead.
This point has a special resonance with me. The beautiful Watts painting I show you above is not by Watts. It's a copy by Cecil Edwin Schott. Cecil Schott worked as a studio assistant for Watts in the 1870s, due to the recommendation of Rossetti who thought the young man showed promise as an artist. Cecil was the eldest son of John Bernard Schott, Fanny Cornforth's second husband, and it was Fanny who introduced the aspiring young artist to Rossetti. Cecil worked for Watts for many years, his skill developed in the studio until he emigrated to South Africa and dropped from the records, sadly. The reason I chose this picture this morning is that the notion that judgement is waiting for you after death has been on my mind as I work on Stunner. Imagine for a moment that in a hundred years time people you have never met will confidently say of you 'Oh, yes, I know for a fact that [insert your name here] was an illiterate, sluttish monster...'. In a way it strikes me that Judgement sometimes isn't blind due to impartiality, but also out of ignorance. People cast judgement upon others blindly because they do not care to look for the truth.
As we approach the new year, I hope we will spend 2012 searching for truth, beauty and a fair share of sniggery giggles together. Happy New Year and as my Grandmother used to say 'May the moon vomit gold into your goblin sack!'