In her painting Searching for Mabon, Schrift illustrates part of an epic journey from The Mabinogion (a collection of eleven medieval Welsh tales based on the topics of myth, folklore, and heroic legends). The search for Mabon is detailed in the story of Culhwch and Olwen. Culhwch asked the aid of his cousin, King Arthur and Culhwch and six of Arthur’s nights go on what seems to be an impossible quest in order to win the hand of Olwen. One of the tasks on the quest was to find Mabon, the son of Modron.
On the journey to find Mabon, Culhwch and Arthur’s nights ask the oldest known animals where Mabon might be found. They start with the Blackbird of Cilgwri, that leads them to an older animal, the Stag of Rhedynfre, that leads them to an older animal, the Owl of Cwm Cawlwyd, that leads them to an older animal, the Eagle of Gwernabwy, that ultimately leads them to the oldest animal, the Salmon of Llyn Llyw. The salmon takes Cai and Culhwch on its back to where Mabon is imprisoned and together, they free Mabon.
In Searching for Mabon, Schrift positions each animal in the story to represent the north, east, south, west, and ether. All of these elements conjoined work magick together to find what is lost.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Sarah Schrift (she/her) is an artist, a singer-songwriter and a magickal practitioner. She has shown her artwork in various galleries along the East Coast and in the Midwest. Schrift’s first album, The Sours, was reviewed globally through the aid of NY-based, MoonJune Records. Schrift released her second album, Ice Cream for Astronauts on her own label, Sommeil Records. She is currently working on her third album with the group, Magickal Creatures under their own label along with bassist and partner Tony Steele (known for his work with Riverdance, Clannad, and Andy Cooney). Schrift received a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in painting and an MFA from Columbia University in studio art. Across all mediums, Schrift’s work deals with the sacred feminine, religion, myth, interpersonal relationships, mediumship, land spirits, and magick.
© Sarah Schrift