#50: Moon over Mountain

#50: Moonscape (Oil on Canvas, 8 x 6 inches)
#50: Moonscape (Oil on Canvas, 8 x 6 inches)

Recently I had been looking again at the paintings of Albert Pinkham Ryder. It was like I had found them all over again, and was inspired to try my hand at another moonscape.

In the post about my earlier moonscape (Painting #44), I described an early morning walk to meditate, when I saw the full moon set over the Hakarimata mountains. This painting is a much closer rendition of that moment, except for the water in the foreground which is invented.

The photo below shows the mountains seen from a spot not far from the door of my studio, taken about the time of the day when I return from work and enter my studio as the sun sets. My cup runs over…

Num-50-1 (2)

As I painted my little painting, a phrase about the moon kept entering my mind. For two days now I was trying to recall where it comes from. Tonight I found it:

It is from this deprivation of love that the feeling of the pathos of things stems. On a stroll in the moonlight in the country, or even a busy street corner, we feel a certain yearning for something we cannot quite catch hold of. We do not know what it is, but the feeling infiltrates our whole being.

The mysterious, misty veil of the moonlight reminds us of eternity and distant lands, and this in turn makes us sensitive to the mutability of our actual life and brings about the melancholy mood. The pathos of things is a kind of homesickness. It is a sorrowful expression of the love we have lost, a yearning for homelands, faces, things, even for living and nonliving beings and things in general.

The sense of the pathos of things is often to be found at the bottom of our sense of beauty, particularly when it arises from the expression of love obstructed by something fateful in life.

Katsuki Sekida – A Guide to Zen: Lessons from a Modern Master

A heartfelt thanks to every person who has encouraged me with likes, comments and to all those who follow my blog. Have a great weekend, I hope you are happy and content.


11 thoughts on “#50: Moon over Mountain

  1. Ryder is definitely your kindred spirit in this motif. Glad that his imagery inspired you to create another sensitive picture of the moonscape. It’s so lovely, poetic and dreamy.


  2. Interesting that you chose the exact prose that seems to accompany your painting so well. That dark band of landscape starting at the mountains makes me think of that which lies beneath the melancholy of something beautiful. I know that feeling exactly! I need to look up Katsuki Sekida. So to….your painting! I wasn’t side-tracked just making a statement of my first impression in a round about way. I can’t say much because I “feel” your painting and that would take a good sit-down talk with a cup of tea! It is gorgeous, simply put. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Margeret, I think your kind and thoughtful comment is better than the painting.
      Sekida is not for everyone, especially if you have strong religious convictions. But his books are filled with kindness and wisdom about meditation.
      Thanks again for your nice comment.

      Liked by 1 person

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