And now, as the night was senescent,
And star-dials pointed to morn–
As the star-dials hinted of morn–
At the end of our path a liquescent
And nebulous lustre was born,
Out of which a miraculous crescent
Arose with a duplicate horn–
Astarte’s bediamonded crescent
Distinct with its duplicate horn.
excerpt from “Ulalame” by Edgar Allen Poe, 1847
From out of the nebulous light, at the end of a path, Edgar Allen Poe describes the appearance of the goddess Astarte. Here, she is an imagined figure of the night, or what’s called a nyktomorph. In darkness, when forms blend into one another and color is suppressed, our minds can create entire fantasies out of the shadows we encounter. Our inclination is to evoke something to make sense of what we can’t clearly see. But this impulse isn’t merely intellectual, the enveloping mystery of the twilight adds an emotional dimension—often fear and wonder—which lends these conjured figures and scenes a fantastical quality.
The exhibition catalog is available from lulu.com or from the gallery.