Sunday, May 6, 2007
The Natural Light of Genius in Annie Leibovitz's Superb Masterpieces of the Queen
Annie Leibovitz's breathtaking masterpieces of
QEII are thought-provoking.
They use only natural light, in a series of paradoxes.
First, the monarch is seen, looking out of her palace,
but, with the doors open, and the darkening clouds
of a gloomy sky have layers of metaphor.
The fact that she is in a stately room, but, one that
is lit only by the natural light, with the doors open,
reveal the character of the great Lady, and her
contemplation, prayer, and real accessibility to
her nation and people.
In the corresponding photo, she is symbolized in
a number of ways. As the royal figurehead of a
nation that's been at war, she appears in a
flashback to her great-great grandmother
Victoria, who wore widows weeds of mourning.
Her expression is stern, but, not harsh in the
It's amazing to see the warmth behind the royal
facade, even without an artificial posed smile.
She has the collective face of all mothers and
grandmothers, who contemplate their young
sons at war, and understand the nature of
war, evil, and concern in our world, in this
vale of tears outside.
The dramatic cape that she wears, is also layered
in meaning. She is on one level a religious figure,
in the austere clothing of a cloistered servant of
God on Earth.
Darkness descending. Stormy skies. Yet, she
has absorbed the light, along with her own
inner light shining. Quite symbolically, she is
the portrait of the moon, whose light is from
the sun, alone, and as monarch, can impart
that light to those in darkness.
Outside, the clouds and descending darkness
speak about the era ending. In her 80's,
while strong, she is the B.E.'s last monarch.
Yet, there's such grace in her face, that it
is profoundly moving.
Bravo Annie Leibovitz! Bravo Queen Elizabeth.