Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Bells of Frayssinet and Sing to Me Poppies - Flower Paintings by Nancy Medina


 Sing to Me Poppies
by Nancy Medina
16X20
Oil on Archival Panel
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I finally have my land legs here in Frayssinet as I write this post for you from the Lot Valley in Southern France. The church photo below is the view from my bedroom window at Le Vieux Couvent, a 17th Century convent converted into an artist school and retreat. I can lean out my blue shuttered window, resting my elbows on the thick, ancient stone wall, and see the stars so clearly tonight.There is nothing but perfect silence outside, except for the historic bells.

Every few hours, the bells ring from the village church here in this medieval village. Years ago, the this was how the townsfolk were able to tell what time it was, and it helped the workers in the fields know when it is time to come in for meals. Now the bells toll for a different purpose. During World War II, the bells did not ring. Now they ring to give comfort to the older residents of Frayssinet, commemorating the victory, and also to help everyone remember there was a time during Hitler's aggression when they did not ring. The Lot Valley played an important role in the French Resistance. I'll be visiting the French Resistance museum soon, and will share photos with you. 

My grandparents came to the US from Northern France many years ago, in advance of the path of Hitler's troops into the Alsace Lorraine. Have you ever visited somewhere for the first time and felt everything around you resonate, like your soul had been here before? This region would have been magical regardless, but is even more so for that personal thread.  I do not know the full story of how my grandparents came to the US from France, but maybe someday I will be able to. Au revoir and bonjour until tomorrow flower friends!

Join me in Southern France ~ August 2015! 

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http://nancymedina.fineartstudioonline.com/page/4852/august-4-14-2015-le-vieux-couvent-southern-france-almost-full

The church bells of Frayssinet
Photo copyright Nancy Medina Art LLC
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