62" X 48"
(c) 1981 David Lang
All Rights Reserved
This painting references the Greek myth -- Leda and the Swan. It is the story of Leda who was seduced by Zeus who came to her in the form of a swan. She also had sex with her husband that evening.
From those two encounters she had 4 children, Castor and Pollux (some Greek trickster gods, born from an egg) and Clymenestra (who murdered Agamemnon for killing her daughter) and Helen of Troy. Not a happy set of people.
One of my artistic dreams is to do modern artistic interpretations of art themes that other master artists have done. There are several versions of Leda, just as there are several different versions of the Crucifixion. Thus far, I have done a Leda and a Madonna painting.
My favorite value tale for "Why you do not want to be an artist, my son!" comes from my efforts at promoting my art in San Francisco in the 1980's. I had a little money and a little time off from my day job. I took my portfolio to San Francisco in hopes of being discovered.
I went to gallery after gallery. Most were polite but... and most of them told me that I should really go see Will Stone at the Will Stone Gallery. "He handles this kind of art."
So, I go to the Will Stone Gallery and sure enough the art he carries is very similar to mine. I tour the gallery and see that there are several painters who are way better than I am and I see that there are several who I think are not as good as I am. So, I have confidence.
But Will is not in. He is at some art show in Los Angeles and will be back sometime later in the week.
Every day I return. He is still not back yet. Finally, on the last possible day that I can stay in San Francisco I go down to his gallery on a Sunday morning. The door is propped open and he is back! He looks a bit like it was a very long week in Los Angeles. He really is not open for business today. He is just checking in.
But, I am desperate -- I have to leave town that day so I bully my way in to show him my portfolio.
He grudgingly takes it and flips through each page at a rate of about one second per page. He arrives at Leda and looks at it longer, looks at me and says, "You married?"
"Got a kid?"
He then continues on to the end of my portfolio and says, "Well, I can't help you."
I am stunned and wait for more information. Finally, I ask "OK, can you tell me why?"
Will opens my portfolio to Leda and says" Your art is too personal. Nobody wants to see a man's nude pregnant wife".
That was the end of that. I am still surprised that a well known and respected (deservedly so -- his gallery was awesome) art dealer had no clue about a well known Greek myth of which there are several paintings and drawings. But, he was right about my model -- it is my son's mother and that is my son waiting to happen.
It is tough to make money doing your art.
If you are interested in owning a fine art color reproduction of this painting or one of my other paintings please click here.
My paintings usually take 6 - 12 months to complete.
Madonna of the Wood
Artifacts of a Conversation