Black Madonna Ostrama; Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn
She Who shines in the Darkness
These altars are the original art created for the Mysteries of the Black Madonna tarot deck. I created my first altar in 2010 after a pilgrimage to Lourdes and since then I have researched this sacred art form. You can read more about the ancient practise of altar making in the wonderful book Imaging Pilgrimage – Art as Embodied Experience – by Dr Kate Barush. The second chapter in the book focuses on this spiritual and devotive process of mine, called Lourdes : Souvenirs as sites. You can also read more about sacred artmaking on my blog http://bookofmarysacredheart.blogspot.com and on Patreon : www.patreon.com/templeofmary.
We contemplate the darkness as we wait for the
Gate to the New Dawn
Black is the colour of night and the shade of soil.
It cloaks midnight and blankets the depths of caves
and grottos. In previous cultures, the most
popular totem for a chief male divinity was the sun and,
by extension, light; goddesses have been
associated with the moon and, by extension, night.
-Leonard Shlain (The Alphabet vs the Goddess)
Many medieval churches, extending in a wide arc from
Russia across Europe to Spain, had as their most sacred
object a statue of Black Mary.
Like the black, abiding earth, her simple being is so vastly
present that we have not noticed it.
– Caitlin Mathews
Each altar is unique; set in a wooden three dimensional box, and can be hung (if you attach a small hanger) or stand against something. The dimensions are 17 cm x 14 cm. Each altar is signed by myself, has the corresponding tarot card on the back and comes with a card wax sealed. I ship in carefully foam lined boxes with DHL International Courier Express worldwide – delivery within a week – and this is included in the price. I only ship on Fridays