One of my favorite paintings is The Birth of Venus by Botticelli depicting the goddess Venus rising from the ocean on a scallop shell. Venus, or Aphrodite as the Greeks called her, was the Goddess of love, beauty and sexuality.
Here’s a link to a wonderful and marvelous thing that I recently discovered – the Google Art Project where you can actually see the painting in the Ufizzi Gallery in Florence, Italy. It lets you zoom in to see all the glorious details right down to the brush strokes!
Yes, late at night you can now find me drooling in my armchair as I vicariously wander around the great art museums of the world.
Shells have been used for personal adornment for thousands of years and have been found in Paleolithic burials, showing that they were highly valued. They were possibly even traded, as sea shells from the Red Sea, which lies between Africa and Asia, have been found in graves as far a way as Switzerland in Europe (they probably wanted to barter for some cheese)
I’ve been working on some wire wrapped seashell necklaces, here’s one I called “Venus on the Half Shell”
This one is a spiral shell- no name as yet.
Kate brought the conch shell in the photos back from the Bahamas last year, it’s just a little too big to make into a necklace-or you know I would!