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25 mars 2009 3 25 /03 /mars /2009 21:47
Why are birds omnipresent in the  Mindszenti's painting ?


Mindszenti, man of culture, knows well that the bird is a being in charge of symbols, a friend, the source of a series of metaphors.

All the mythologies of the world grant to birds a place of choice. They have generally a position on the tree of the world, often in the summit while the snake is on the base. The Koran speaks about the language of the birds which is the one angels. They are always somewhere between the men and the gods, they symbolize the divine freedom, they are messengers (and messages) gods.



For the Egyptians, the phoenix, the fabulous bird who is always reborn of his ashes, is the symbol of the resurrection the most spread in the world. Its legend finds its origin to Héliopolis, ancient Egyptian city where we worshipped the god of the sun, Râ, whose embodiment the heron Bennou (name of the phoenix in Egypt), would be. The myths different on some points of detail - the color of the plumage, by exemple-, but they tell all the same story. The Phoenix, the only bird of its sort, was a fabulous animal, endowed with a supernatural longevity (five hundred years or more, according to certain authors), which had the power to be reborn of its ashes. When the hour of its end came, it  built itself a nest of aromatic herbs, then exposed itself to the beams of the sun and was allowed burn.Three days later, it was reborn. While it represented, at the beginning, only the appearance and the cyclic disappearance of the sun, the Phoenix quickly became a symbol of resurrection; it embodies the soul or the immortality in the various iconographies. The winged creatures represented above a funeral stake or escaping from the body of a deceased are not all a phoenix. He can involve another bird, eagle, for example, which sometimes symbolizes the soul of the emperors.

In the same way, the simorgh of mystic Persian always settles at the top of the world and represents at the same time the divinity and the human soul. Its feathers have a therapeutic power. We could quote tens of similar myths throughout the world.
Every bird, young and present daily or immense and mythical, can influence the need of expression of the man.

In Extreme-Orient, for example, the musics make gladly descriptive, not in the sense of an imitation, but rather in the sense of an evocation, a musical and spiritual suggestion. The classical musics of Japan and China go to this sense.In Japan, numerous musical pieces evoke the crane, the symbol of longevity, in its nest. The musicians can use it to suggest the difficulties of the life. The techniques of play, in particular the tremors stage the crane: nesting, shouts, initiative and first steps of the young people, the flight, allocates young people when they are rather big. In China, an entitled piece " wild goose arise on the beach ", one express the call of the wide. Played with the lute or with the zither, it describes minutely the arrival of the gooses, the flight in training, the distant shouts, then them lengths circular mouvenents before landing. After the landing, they communicate between them, they feed, we feel the harmony of the group, the young people follow their mothers. At the end, the evening falls and the serenity settles down in the group. These two pieces, the most famous, are enough to make the wealth understand suggestive of classical educations of these two big countries. But there are other examples of course , in particular the description by the Chinese musicians of the fight between a bird of prey and a swan.
Everywhere, but every time in a different way, we shall find a set of narrow links between birds and traditional musics. All the traditions that they are oral or written, are revealing mythologies and cultures of popular faiths appropriate for every society. It is moreover interesting to notice, that the bird sometimes plays an active role in the human society. And it is true both in the field of the work and  of the leisure activities. The falconers of the world were certainly fascinated by the animal to their tales and songs. It is an example closer to us which is the one of the role of the canary in mines. Here, it is the bird who sang for the man and if the miners had, throughout the world, immense directories of songs and ballads, it is true that they sang more often the tragedies, the strikes and the difficulties of the work than some verse in homage to their winged companions in misfortune.In Afganistan, the players of lute are persuaded that the music urges birds to sing. They do not, from then on, hesitate to take canaries in cage during their concerts or recordings. More the music is good, more birds are supposed to join it their singing. According to John Baily, " birds supply a kind of barometer of the quality of the music ".

These diverse examples remind at least that birds have a language which the men knew how to understand or interpret. What appears as an evidence when we bend over the popular songs of most of the peoples of the world. A rural song, generally, which conveyed with a lot of poetry and vividness the multiple roles played by birds in these diverse regional or national cultures.

The bird is king of the metaphor. Everywhere it takes the place of a man, a woman, a part (often sexual) of the one or the other one, (in toscan the word " uccello " wants as well mean the bird as the penis), it is exchangeable with the human being. It is enough to know the codes. As it is not said, moreover, in the spoken language, diverse expressions as " be exchanged names of birds ", " he is a bird of bad expect ", or  " he is a rare bird ", or still " he is a funny bird ". We say that somebody has a " brains of bird " or a " appetite of bird ". Without counting the very numerous proverbs as "with time and effort you achieve your nest", " when the cage is made, the bird flies away ", "one swallow doesn't make a summer" etc.... So the bird can be the vector of all our aspiration and all our defects. It  did not enter for all that innocently.  It did not enter for all that innocently in our spoken and our traditional songs where the trilogy of the love nightingale-lark-cuckoo is present in all Europe :
" Do not leave, Romeo, no, it is the nightingale, it is not the lark! " (Romeo and Juliett, William shakespeare, inspired by an Italian tale of Masuccio of Salerno taken back by Luigi Da Porto).

What we mean when we sing:
- I came down in my garden, a nightingale came on my hand
- Lark, kind lark
- the lark is on the branch
- Nightingale who comes in France
- The cuckoo in the distant forest
- Has it flutter
- There is a magpie
- The small swallow
- The cuckoo laid
- and so on...


What mean Mindszenti
throught all these birds  ?


Agnès Grillo

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école de communication et publicité rouen 22/04/2009 21:54

Très sympa vos toiles!!! =)