Vincent Van Gogh 30 March 1853 – 29 July 1890
Women Picking Olives
Oil on canvas 72.4 x 89.9
I’ve been thinking a lot of this painting that I saw at the Metropolitan Museum of Art last March. As the harvest continues to come in and the season of the naked trees begins with the falling of a few leaves hither and yon this painting keeps appearing in my mind.
The olive pickers series “demonstrate the relationship between man and nature by depicting one of the cycles of life, harvesting or death. It is also an example of how individuals, through interaction with nature, can connect with the divine.” (Wikipedia) Connecting with the Divine while working the land is one of my preferred methods of prayer.
The Van Gogh brings that all into focus for me. I adore the colors of the painting and the fact that the three women may depict a feminine trinity appeals to me. Honoring the cycles of the seasons and the labors unique to each is what enriches my life. I do not think I could live in a climate that is (relatively) static. The changes and distinctive callings of each season keep me connected and engaged. How about you, do you prefer changing seasons or not? The current crunch of leaves and the change in hue from vivid greens to those inexorably moving toward brown, but still holding some life is a time piece of sorts. A clock without hands.