Sunday, November 20, 2011

Holy Antlers, Batman!

Saint Anne, if memory serves, in the Danish National Museum
         The great thing about travel is not how broadening it is, or how much better the smørrebrød tastes Over There than it does in Missouri (go figure), but what a delightful lot of sublimely weird stuff you can find if you look for it.
          As you can see, I do look for it.
          I'm a westerner born and bred, and am not myself unfamiliar with the idiosyncratic use of antlers, usually in furnishings like these lovely items, found in a quick google:

Keen, yes? You can buy it here:

You know you need an antler chandelier:

Maybe a scary bar stool?

          Until I saw the St. Anne icon hanging from the ceiling of the Danish National Museum, though, I'd never seen antlers used in iconography.  I approve. I'm also very fond of the holiness spikes emanating from St. Anne in a kind of "noli me tangere"* nimbus. Even though this icon dates from the 16th or 17th century, its creator has managed to imbue it with Post-Ironic flourishes that charm the jaded palate of the modern museum-goer, turning St. Anne into a kind of backwoods punk beacon. Because who can resist a punk saint? Not me.

*"Touch me not." Good advice, I'd say.

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