Picturae Cassae



(1982 - 1984)

Aeneid 1/12

But do not entrust your sayings to the leaves, lest, distorted, they disappear

 in the play of the rapid winds

Aeneid 2/12

Show me the way and open the sacred doors.

Aeneid 3/12

You cruel one. Why still try to terrify me,

now that my son is torm away?

That was your only way to ruin me, for I am

not afraid of death and do not care for any god.

Aeneid 4/12

The vanquished have this one escape,

to hope for none.

Aeneid 5/12

This is not the time to stare at exhibitions.

Aeneid 6/12

There are twin gates of Sleep: one, they say

is made of horn, by which true Shades gain easy exit; the other, unblemished, is wrought with glistening ivory,  but through this gate the Shades send false visions to the world above.

Aeneid 7/12

Then the queen of gods, descended from the heavens,

forced with her own hands the sluggish doors and as the hinges turned, Saturn’s daughter burst the iron-bound gates of war.

Aeneid 8/12

And after all, is death so sad?

Aeneid 9/12

Just as in dreams by night when languid sleep has closed our eyes, in vain we seem to want to forge our anxious path, but halfway along, discouraged, we falter; our tongues are now helpless our bodies have lost their reliable strength, neither voice nor word can follow.

Aeneid 10/12

Euryalus, have the gods sparked this fire into our hearts, or does each man's relentness longing create a god within?

Aeneid 11/12

O father must one believe then, that souls go up to heaven only to return once more to inhabit these cumbersome bodies?

Why this wretched longing for light?

Aeneid 12/12

Weeping and wailing, he feeds his soul on what is, after all, an empty picture.

The book Open Studio has an essay by W.R Johnson about the Aeneid series entitled: Thoughts on Picturae Cassae.