New England Gothic, like other manifestations of the American Gothic, encompasses supernatural and explained phenomena, ghosts, witches, and monsters as well as inbred families, guilty secrets, and monsters in human shape. New England’s Gothic history, folklore, and literature combine nostalgia for a medieval or colonial golden age with the stronger belief that from the past comes horror and evil. Stephen King, the exemplar of Gothic New England since the 1970s, continues the tradition of collecting and rewriting supernatural legends begun by Cotton Mather and John Greenleaf Whittier. Nineteenth-century authors such as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Harriet Beecher Stowe immortalized the region’s Gothic past. In the twentieth century, Rhode Island’s H. P. Lovecraft peopled the landscape with hybrid monsters and the reanimated dead. For these writers, seventeenth-century Puritans stand in for the Middle Ages of the first Gothic Revival.
“Spend five minutes with this nine-foot-tall vase. Look for the army of snails with their little horns, all different one from another, featured with such naturalism at the very bottom: it appears they are climbing in slow motion, inching along to the top. And so should you, with your eyes.
Look in a spiral and move around, up, and down to jump into a fantastic symbolist universe where you’ll discover a spider, a strange batman, lace, ribbons, the signature of the artist, the date of the piece, and the foundry mark of the Brussels foundry. Only a slow viewing allows you to appreciate the incredible twisting of the handles or the details of the peacock feathers at the very top.”
Recommended viewing for slowartday from our decorative arts & sculpture curator, Anne-Lise Desmas.
To zoom in and let your “eyes” wander, click here.
Vase (detail), 1889, Jean-Desire Ringel d’Illzach. Bronze and copper, 107 ½ x 40 9/16 in. The J. Paul Getty Museum.
My dad’s friend acquired this sculpture a few months ago, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. I’ve kept this picture in my camera roll and keep coming back to it. It’s so creepy. It looks like an accident - like the stone was melted in a fire before completion. Frog-like, monstrous… it’s oddly compelling. I really wish I had a copy.
Apparently, it’s quite an important sculpture, called “Batracian Chimera”, carved by Jean Desire Ringel d'Illzach in 1905.
Gebirgsjäger Julius Alfred “Papa” Ringel during the World War II. The Gebirgsjäger are mountain troops the word “Jäger” mean “Hunter” on his cap there is the Edelweiss. The edelweiss flower was the symbol of Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS Gebirgsjäger. It is still the symbol of the mountain brigade in the German army today. The plant prefers rocky limestone places at about 1800–3000 m altitude. ——————————- Gebirgsjäger Julius Alfred “Papa” Ringel durant la Seconde guerre mondiale. Gebirgsjäger est un corps d'infanterie aplin le mot “Jäger” signifie “chasseur” et sur sa casquette on aperçoit l'Edelweiss. La fleur Edelweiss était le symbole des Gebirgsjäger de la Wehrmacht et la Waffen SS. A ce jour l'Edelweiss est toujours le symbole de l'infanterie alpine dans l'armée Allemande. La plante pousse en moyenne entre 1 800 à 3 000 mètres d'altitude sur des pelouses rocailleuses, vires rocheuses…