Dame Blanches are female paranormal entities found in French folklore.
J. A. MacCulloch believes that the Dames Blanches were originally French pagan goddesses, and suggested their name Dame may have derived from the ancient guardian goddesses known as Matres. By looking at old inscriptions to guardian goddesses, specifically inscriptions to the Dominæ, who watched over the home, perhaps became the Dames of Medieval folklore.
Thomas Keightley (1870) describes the Dames Blanches as a type of Fée (faerie) known in Normandy “who are of a less benevolent character.” They lurk in narrow places such as ravines, fords, and on bridges, and try to attract passersby’s attention.
They require the passerby to join her in a dance or assist her, in order to pass. If assisted she “makes him many courtesies, and then vanishes.” One such Dame was known as La Dame d'Apringy who appeared in a ravine at the Rue Quentin at Bayeux, Normandy where one must dance with her a few rounds to pass. Those who refused were thrown into the thistles and briar, while those who danced were not harmed.
Another Dame was known on a narrow bridge in the district of Falaise, named the Pont d'Angot. She only allowed people to pass if they went on their knees to her. Anyone who refused was tormented by the lutins (a type of goblin in French folklore), cats, owls, and other creatures that help her.
Opening Reception: Thursday, July 3rd, 8:00-10:00 pm
The End is Near
465 7th Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(Park Slope, btw16th and Windsor)
Each of the more than two hundred invited artists received a 3" x 3" plastic zip lock bag, a “dime bag” of sorts. They were asked to create their artwork for and installed within the bag. There was no overt conceptual theme to show beyond the device of the bag itself and each artist was free to interpret within these simple parameters.
Brittany Keats Cerullo
Richard Ray Chan
William Hatch Crosby
Eddie del Rosario
James Benjamin Franklin
Amy S. Kauffman
Esther Sarah Kim
So Yoon Kim
So Jin Lee
Richard McGuire + Maybe
Sergio Luis Mesa
Hazel Lee Santino
Ryan Jacob Smith
Nichole van Beek
Jennifer Van Meter
Esther Pearl Watson
B Kristen Won
Article from The Sunday Times on Benedict Cumberbatch and his lovely mother Wanda Ventham appearing at the Chelsea Flower Show tomorrow
The Geranium is Afoot - Sherlock goes to Chelsea
For decades it has been the ultimate symbol of the middle aged and middle class. Now the Chelsea flower show is getting the kind of celebrity makeover that helped turn cooking into a national spectator sport.
The Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch is one of the gardening enthusiasts taking part in this year’s BBC coverage of horticulture’s biggest annual event. He has teamed up with his actress mother Wanda Ventham to review the floral displays on BBC2 tomorrow.
The 37-year-old actor, who has previously described how he relaxes through “roof gardening”, will appear as part of a series of interviews entitled Mum and Me, in which celebrity gardeners including the Strictly Come Dancing judge Darcey Bussell, the comedian Julian Clary and the actress Emilia Fox, talk to their mothers about the displays.
Rosemary Alexander, a former Chelsea flower show judge and principal of the English Gardening School, said the BBC’s preference for amateur enthusiasts rather than trained professionals to front its coverage will help bring gardening into the mainstream as rising numbers of young people take up the hobby.
In an interview last week the newsreader Sophie Raworth, brought in to replace the veteran Alan Titchmarsh as one of the main BBC presenters, admitted she was no gardening expert, describing herself as an “enthusiast” rather than a professional.
“Well-known enthusiastic amateurs make it appear more accessible,” said Alexander. “Alan is wonderful and has done so much for gardening, but they’ve got to bring in new, younger people.”
The television coverage reflects a more youthful feel at the flower show itself with more young designers than before.
Matthew Keightley, 29, is exhibiting his first show garden at Chelsea this year. Named Hope on the Horizon, the naturalistic garden is based on the shape of the Military Cross medal.
“I’ve noticed increasing numbers of young people this year especially have taken up gardening. I think it’s following the same path of food and cooking; a few years ago it was budget, Ready Steady Cook, and now it’s cool to be eating out, cooking experimentally and there are loads of programmes about food,” he said.
“Bringing in young presenters and celebrities in gardening programmes has helped do that for design and gardening. There are more young designers at Chelsea this year, which is helping the next generation to get a foot in the door and gives aspiring designers hope.”
There are other signs, too, that gardening is breaking through the age barrier. The Royal Horticultural Society says more than two-thirds of all UK schools have signed up to its school gardening campaign, and more than 30% of its members are now under 25.
Alexander reports a 25% increase in applicants under the age of 26 to her school, in the Chelsea Physic Garden, in the past year, driven by their desire to improve the environment.
The broadening appeal of gardening is also reflected in the rising viewing figures for gardening programmes on TV. Gardeners’ World and The Big Allotment Challenge were among the most popular programmes on BBC2 last month, each attracting audiences of more than 2m.
Martine Sobey, 28, is one of the rising number of young gardening enthusiasts. She took up gardening four years ago after she moved into a shared flat in Stoke Newington, north London, with friends. “I had never done any gardening before in my life. My parents are avid gardeners but whenever they talked about it I used to tell them it was boring,” she said.
Now, when Sobey, a climate policy analyst, gets in from work the first thing she does is tend to her garden, home to a mix of “perennials, wild flowers, bulbs”. Her boyfriend, Will Bradley, grows a variety of herbs and vegetables including tomatoes, salad leaves, beetroot and mint in the garden.
“I’ve noticed that over the past two years, several of our friends in Hackney have also become keen gardeners. It’s so peaceful and therapeutic, and it’s also good for the environment,” he said.