Icarus Flies to Selene
Charcoal and pastel on paper
10 x 8 inches
In this drawing I chose to use imagery inspired by two separate Greek myths, the myth of Icarus, and the myth of Selene. In the myth that Icarus is best known for, he flies too close to the sun, despite his father’s instructions, while trying to escape from Crete. The heat of the sun melts the wax holding his wings together and causes him to fall to his death. The goddess Selene is the moon goddess in Greek Mythology, and is known to rise from the oceans at night and light the sky.
The moth in this drawing is representative of Icarus. What inspired this symbolism is the phrase "like a moth to a flame". The idea that the moth is attracted to something that may lead to its ultimate demise, resonated with me, and reminded me of the story of Icarus. I wanted to play on the theme of hubris from Icarus' story, and twist it so that his ambition could not fail. Selene's light, unlike the hot light of the sun, is a gentle and soft; had Icarus flown so high in the night sky, he would have been safe.
Rehs Contemporary Galleries, Inc., New York City