Size: 80 x 80, Edition 8
Size: 40 x 40, Edition 8
The third and most recent work from the REVIVAL series carries the title Vesna, Spring. In a round frame Belkina shows the female as a Virgo Lactans or Madonna Lactans, the mother nourishing with breastmilk. The Madonna Lactans is an often used motif in Russian Orthodox Icons, and for Belkina this is a familiar image. She translates this image in the rendition of a modest woman with an exposed breast from which a drop of milk emerges. The female who can nourish the new life.
With Katerina Belkina the role and place the female can take in the modern world forms an important leitmotiv. In Vesna Belkina again lifts her from her individual situation and shows the female as the universal mother. There is no child in this work. The woman is shown as the one who gives and nourishes life.
The flowers that surround the woman are strikingly present and impose the comparison with the famous panel of the Primavera from the Italian renaissance painter Sandro Botticelli. In this work, which has ‘the pure love’ as its theme, the goddess Flora plays an important role. As the deity of spring, that again and again creates life, she spreads flowers, everywhere she goes. Flowers as the fruit bearers of life.
The flowers in Belkina’s Vesna are golden cherry blossoms, the early beginnings of the fruit on the bare branches of the trees that eventually will produce the cherries, a fruit that is also known as a ‘fruit of the paradise’. In the east cherry blossoms form the symbol of spring and virginity. With the gold of the blossoms Belkina refers to the purest light, the heavenly element that houses the divine.
Her soft expression as well as the unadorned appearance, the blue clothing with the slight red accent, shows the woman in Vesna in a new quality. Especially if we compare her to the woman in Entreaty, the second work from the Revival series. The red clothing with the blue ribbon accent in that work have now given way to a blue dress with a red ribbon in her hair. The symbolism of the colours red and blue direct us relatively to the earthly and heavenly life, and certainly play a part in these works.