Art Inspiration: A Gift From The Gods; Pandora: Zeus


Pandora title

In my life I have had moments that inspire me to create and wonder about different possibilities. Working with children has always been a catalyst for these moments. On a number of occasions I have provided a drawing or art class for the children and their curiosity has inspired many ideas and creations. Some of these inspirations have produced scenes of me drawing them camping, or as characters from Harry Potter, but the majority of them enjoyed me creating a scene based on the Greek gods. I have posted this work so titled The Greek Gods, Distraction on Olympus”.

This experience was so enjoyable that I have been thinking of creating another scene from Greek Mythology for some time. But with my time limited I have put this on the back burner, yet the idea and desire is ever-present.

Henry Moore Pandora and the imprisoned statues from Prometheus

Recently I have been discussing Greek Mythology, going to art exhibits and other activities with a friend. With our time together she has inspired an idea in me for a new scene from Greek Mythology. Our talks and shared experiences have stirred my imagination into action. It all came out of an art exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) we attended on the works of Henry Moore and Francis Bacon. In the exhibit I saw a sketch by Moore called Pandora. It caught my eye because if you have every seen Moore’s works, it about the human form but the heads are small and the focus is on the body itself. Yet in this drawing he drew Pandora with a full head and face to proper proportion. This was Moore’s idea or take on the legend of Prometheus and Pandora, my favourite Greek Myth story. It made me wonder what would my take or depiction of this story be if I drew it. With that thought in mind I began the journey to create my depiction of the creation of Pandora.

In the next few weeks I will be posting the different characters of this scene and a little background info on each one. I must emphasize that this drawing is not for the children in my school but an independent work I undertook for my own enjoyment. It is from my imagination and may be a bit adult.

 Zeus

  The supreme god and the one with the final say in anything. He is the third son and sixth child of the Titans Cronus, his father and Rhea his mother. His father was afraid of his children rising up and defeating or over-throwing him as he did with his father Uranus, so he swallowed them whole. His mother hid him at birth and instead gave Cronus a stone wrapped in a blanket to ingest.

  Once Zeus got older he tricked Cronus into regurgitating his bothers and sisters namely Hestia, Demeter, Hera, Hades, and Poseidon. He them teamed up with them, the Titans Themis and her son Prometheus and the Hecatonchires and the Cyclopes in a great battle against Cronus and the rest of the Titans called the Titanomachy. Cronus and his allies were defeated and sent into Tartarus.  

  Zeus, being the youngest brother, was not to inherit the top job as supreme ruler of the gods though his older brother Hades was to have. But instead of fighting over the issue, the three brothers decided to draw lots to decide. Zeus drew the longest straw and became the god of the skies and supreme ruler of the gods; Poseidon drew the second longest and became the god of the seas and Hades drawing the shortest became ruler of the Underworld.

  I could go on and describe Zeus’ many adventures and sexual conquests, but I do not have the time to list them all. Suffice it to say that Zeus had many lovers, including human females and a possible male (Ganymede). His role with humans is a one of love/hate. He loves the women but he never truly loved humans. Many think that Zeus created humans where in fact he did not. Prometheus created humans and he has been their champion since.

  Zeus is described as a man with a beard and a look of a king or nobility. He has a scepter and a bolt of lightning and thunder and is known to carry an AEGIS (shield) similar to his daughter’s, Athena. He is married to his sister Hera who is the mother goddess. Zeus’ character is very complicated to say the least.   On one hand he is seen as this harsh womanizer that has numerous affairs and countless illegitimate children with goddess and mortals and is scolded and nagged by a pretentious wife. Then on the other hand he is an almighty god with morals. A just and loving god, who rewards the just and punishes the wicked.

  I created Zeus as an elderly, yet young-looking man.   He has a beard and long wavy hair that is white representative of his age and the regal-ness of his statue. To add to his formidableness I made him strong with a larger upper body similar to a body builder and large biceps. Then of course I added the signature-lightening bolt to his tunic.

  I will describe Zeus’ role in the story of Pandora in the final rendering, but for now I hope you enjoy ZeusThe King Of The Gods’ from A Gift From The Gods; Pandora.  

Zeus - God of the Sky. The Supreme Olympian God.

Zeus – God of the Sky. The Supreme Olympian God.

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