Sunday, September 2, 2012

The All Seeing Eye . . .

watches me make things :)

Here is an in progress photo of another brooch in what I'm planning to be an occult/esoteric imagery themed series. The mystic ocular symbol which forms the basis for the design has intrigued me for a while, and I've found that eyes are really fun to tool in leather (I've already started a second version of the central leather cameo). I've layered the carved leather over some tea-stained lace. It's accented with various sized eyelets, some of them set with glass pearls, and three spots. I still need to do some more hand-stitching, attach the pin back, and secure the backing layers together.

The symbol can be traced back to the ancient Egyptian udjat, also known as the Eye of Ra or the Eye of Horus, which had solar associations. It was a favorite apotropaic amulet in that culture. Many later depictions feature the eye surrounded by a halo of rays of light. It was then adopted as a symbol of the all seeing eye of the monotheistic God and came to be known as the Eye of Providence. At some point, it was overlaid on a triangle, which could suggest a link back to its Egyptian origins, but according to some sources the triangle was said to represent the Christian trinity and thus was widely used in a Christian context over the past few centuries to represent their God's omniscient nature. This is rather ironic considering that if you do a search on "all seeing eye" it brings up many links from conspiracy theorists who claim the symbol, which appears on the Great Seal of the United States, is a Satanic/Pagan/Masonic/Illuminati/Insert-Your-Boogeymen-of-Choice icon and indicates their subversive nature.

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