Saturday, April 25, 2009

Pomegranates again

Hello blogging world. I have been absent from my page for quite a while.
I left thinking about pomegranates, and my thoughts return to them now, with a little story!Well it might ramble on a bit...
A few years ago, I asked a painting group if anyone knew where I could find a pomegranate to paint. Lovely and talented Liz turned up the next week with two beautiful, ripe pieces of the fruit . She had visited her sister in the town of Dwellingup at the weekend, to find her tree full of pomegranates, and kindly thought of me.

I was touched by her kindness, but also by the thought that Dwellingup is a pretty little forest town in Western Australia, which was almost completely destroyed by fire, over 20 years ago .
The fruit seemed to me a symbol of resurgeance and new life.

I think I am right in recalling that Liz's sister's family had experienced the whole trauma. Recent fires have devastated similar towns in the state of Victoria, on the other side of the country. Far worse as so many lives were lost. WA has been less affected of late, and I am sure our preventative burning of fire breaks is the reason. Greenies, beware of what you wish for!

Anyway, back to the pomegranates!

I painted them in oils.
This hangs in our dining room , with some quince and fig paintings, each 12" X 16".......................................................
Then we ate them.
But I kept some seeds to plant.
They grew into tough, thorny little bushes.

I had bought two cast iron urns for my husband's birthday, which got so hot and dry in the sun, that almost nothing would survive in them.
But I thought of the pomegranate that survives in the desert and is in so many Middle Eastern recipes.
Two bushes went into the urns, where they have done really well, and after a couple of years there, have started producing fruit.

I have almost killed them a few times, when they have been deprived of water while we have been away,but they keep coming back. One is being nursed back AGAIN as I write, so I thought I must photograph the other for posterity, just in case. My husband just ate the biggest pomegranate!
I have every intention of painting the daughter fruit, and hopefully growing grandbaby pomegranate trees for the Dwellingup parent.

My photo shows a very sparse lookng plant. The leaves are small, and it has lost quite a lot in our recent absence, but looks better in real life.
Excuse the messy area.. ahem... that is where I should be at work, not on the computer.
The dog is Harrison, licking his lips. He probably would eat the pomegranates, as he has just consumed our pretty crab apples, green tomatoes on the bushes, and is eyeing the ripening passion fruit..


Cathy Gatland said...

Whoopee! You're back! What a delightful surprise to find on my 'recently updated' list. The painting is just beautiful - I'm sure I did see this in your dining room - the fruit ones were there when we visited, weren't they? The poms are masterfully painted, and that's a wonderful re-birth story. When I was looking up symbols (for altar cushions I think) they're biblically a symbol of fertility - may it be so in Dwellingup. The bush looks so pretty in the urn, and darling Harrison appreciating all the fruit - he and Shashi must be so happy you're home!!

Vivienne said...

Ho loyal sister...thanks for looking at my musings. The painting looks a bit better than for real... the photograph's colour was all wrong, and in correcting it, I have enhanced the contrast quite a lot, so it looks a lot crisper than it really does.
I remember now that I like painting stripes.Yes the dogs are back in clover, and very sweet!

laura said...

So nice to see you back, Vivienne! What a treat. I love the pomegranate painting--such strong design (the black and white striped cloth was a phenomenal idea!). You paint pomegranates so well--and I think they're very difficult!
I believe pomegranate was the fruit Persephone ate?

Vivienne said...

Hello again, and thanks, Laura. I remember what I have been missing in not blogging... friends like yourself, the stimulation of links such as Persephone (going to look her up now), and of course the dip into others' creative lives and minds.

ParisBreakfasts said...

Lovely painting!
I've never seen Pommies growing (especially since I live in NYC) but I am addicted to them.
I eat the seeds every morning all through the winter and never catch colds or flu ever...well not for the past 7 years I've been eating them. I don't suppose I could follow your example in non-tropical New York City :(
At least I can find them off-season when I go to Paris...
But that's rather a long way to go for a pomegranete...ahem

Vivienne said...

Thanks for your comment, Paris breakfast... nice name, oh my!! Well you could do a lot worse than fly to Paris for pomegranates for breakfast. They're selling pommie juice here now as a healthy anitoxidant rich elixir... Persephone knew a thing or two.

Gillian said...

Hi there V! Enjoyed reading your pom post - and especially the painting. What a wonderful story. Do hope the "daughter" trees in the urns will thrive. Witnessing renewal in any form is a good and wonderful thing. I'm seeing that with our magnolias coming out now. Feeling a slight urge to draw again. But have to finish a sewing project I committed to first... :) I don't dare start anything else till that's out the way. ( I must tell my friend in Arizona who has a garden to grow poms - the climate there should be good.)