the pensive prophetess

Alphonse Mucha.  Prophetess, 1896. WikiArt.

Alphonse Mucha

The art museum was huge, having some of the largest collections of paintings, statuary, jewelry, ceramics and such in the world. Gallery opened onto gallery. You could loose yourself in the art or in the building.
I liked to wander with no clear plan. I might go from the Renaissance to Jackson Pollack. I felt like an explorer using a star chart.
If a painting caught my interest, there was a pattern. I went as close to the painting as allowed, taking in the brush strokes, colours, fine, small details. Then, I would walk backwards if the gallery were empty, or pace off distance if busy,  allowing the picture to visually grow.
I would find the nearest bench, and go into what friends called my pensive mode. I tilted my head to one side, almost placing it on my shoulder. The long braid of yellow hair centered down my back would fall to the side.
Deep in thought, I barely realized I brought a closed hand up to my chin, then unwinding two fingers, one placed on my mouth, the other on my cheek.
My eyes half closed, almost trance-like, I stared at my other hand, resting on my knee. My spine, slightly bent, my knees together, and my skirt or dress flowing towards the floor.
I might sit for minutes or hours; I never noted the time. Stretching like a cat, I would check how long before the museum closed.

Inspired by Tale Weaver’s prompt 41 “The Prophetess” for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie

13 thoughts on “the pensive prophetess

  1. Bastet January 5, 2015 / 9:25 am

    What an interesting piece .. love how your character gets lost in the painting … well done!


    • phylor January 5, 2015 / 1:33 pm

      Thank you.
      I do get drawn in myself. Especially when I see the original painting rather than pictures and posters.
      There are lovely surprises such as how small Dali’s melting clock picture is.
      I can look at a Breughel for hours, picking out the fine detail.
      Van Gogh takes my breath away.


      • Bastet January 6, 2015 / 1:13 pm

        That sounds like a lovely way to get into art … living it is so much better than just consuming and passing it by.


        • phylor January 6, 2015 / 6:06 pm

          Absorbing art keeps it in your memory — some even stays in my spirit. Those are the very special paintings/photographs/sketches.


          • Bastet January 7, 2015 / 1:30 am

            I actually do know what you mean … Van Gogh has that particular power over me … though there are many others of course.


  2. phylor January 3, 2015 / 10:18 am

    I look forward to viewing his art.


  3. georgeplace2013 January 3, 2015 / 2:12 am

    Ah, to get lost in a picture. Very nice. I can see you in this very well described scene.


    • phylor January 3, 2015 / 10:17 am

      Thank you. I found the painting so beautiful and compelling I could imagine looking at a painting the same pensive but engaged way Mucha has painted his prophetess.


  4. summerstommy2 January 2, 2015 / 7:57 pm

    I found your descriptions of your hands very vivid and beautifully done, very artistic in fact. I know art can do that to you, leave you entranced.


    • phylor January 2, 2015 / 10:10 pm

      Thank you!
      I was taking my cues from the Mucha painting.
      I do like art museums and can get entranced by Van Gogh, Breugel, Dali.


      • summerstommy2 January 2, 2015 / 10:15 pm

        To be entranced by art is a wonderful thing. My son is an artist who has gained support around the world.
        You might like to look at his work
        I am keen know what you think of his work.


  5. thaliatiagraves January 2, 2015 / 5:31 pm

    Some works of art do have a life of their own. I can see becoming entranced by this one!
    Thanks for visiting us at


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