Rossetti, Dante Gabriel - Aspecta Medusa
Type of Spiritual Experience
Quote from Internet:
Dante Gabriel Rossetti's Aspecta Medusa shows Medusa not in her monstrous form, but as a beautiful woman. According to Greek mythology, Medusa was once a maiden so lovely that her beauty rivaled that of Athena herself — which is why the envious goddess transformed Medusa's hair into snakes writhing from her head. Anyone who glimpsed Medusa's horrific appearance would instantly turn into stone. In this picture, however, Medusa retains her original beauty. She is the typical Rossettian ideal: she has a strong facial structure, her lips are full, and her long, reddish hair has been left loose and flowing. Yet she has an air of doom about her. Medusa merges with the murky background, gazing downwards into the darkness as her head tilts ominously to the side.
Rossetti wrote a poem to accompany the drawing:
Andromeda, by Perseus sav'd and wed,
Hanker'd each day to see the Gorgon's head:
Till o'er a fount he held it, bade her lean,
And mirror'd in the wave was safely seen
That death she liv'd by.
Let not thine eyes know
Any forbidden thing itself, although
It once should save as well as kill: but be
Its shadow upon life enough for thee.
In essence if you seek to raise someone up to divine status - Love with visualisation - you must not touch.