Over the years, I have seen these images more so in uncommon places, stuck in between shelves of chachkies amidst the books and bobbles of antique shops. Occasionally they would land on the cover of a periodical or adorn the vestibule of an entry foyer. I am aware that these places are not what reflect the reverence they call for, but nonetheless the juxtaposition adds another layer of interest for me.
With every passing glance, a seed was planted in my imaginative brain that kept a candle lit for their purpose and presence. This Christmas that candle was lit a bit brighter and I chose to spend a focused few weeks praying, pondering, and allowing not only the Madonna and Child to impact my experience, but Motherhood as well and hold my attention.
When December landed its first day this month I began to spend time having quiet days of redemption and reflection about the role mothers have with their young. I have considered this in light of being a mother, a step-mother, of having an amazing mother, and watching young mothers work so hard in the business of loving and living. With every sketch and brush stroke, I found myself pulling back tears or memories of amazing mothers, of moments that were hard and dark, and at the very nature of mothering. The experience has been deeply satisfying and restorative. I also considered the stories I was taught about Mary and Joseph, the birth of Christ, which left me deeply curious about Jesus’s life as a baby, toddler, and young boy.
The paintings below are the pieces I have created using this focus topic to paint through. I am beyond grateful with what they taught me, with what they revealed about my connections and beliefs around motherhood, and about the Holy mother. This Christmas has brought me so many new facets of what the spirit of Christ’s birth means to me and how I can in turn love others well. They are each a bit different, representing different types of mothers and moments and full of the emotions and feelings I worked through.
Painting is my calling, and as I live a life of painter, using my creative gifts to honor motherhood and the Madonna was such a beautiful way for me to bring a bit more healing to the Christmas season. It was also a way to connect my visit to Tuscany with my own personal connection of art history. I hope that you enjoy viewing them as much as I enjoyed painting them. If you are interested in purchasing a print you may visit www.ardithgoodwin.com/prints
If you are interested in acquiring one of the remaining originals feel free to message me at firstname.lastname@example.org for details or visit www.ardithgoodwin.com/land-of-ardithian