Witching Hour

Nadya Johnson

Joined January 2009

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Visitation at the Graveyard

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FEATURED in IMAGINATIVE SKULLS

This was inspired by the old Russian myths of the Resalki. There is no exact equivalent in our western cultures (witches aren’t the same.) The Resalki were always women, always young and beautiful. They lurked around abandoned homes, barns and old churchyards in particular. But even on the brightest summer afternoon, a traveler could be waylaid by these fiends because they had such beauteous appearance and they feigned such innocence, standing on the roadways as they did, crying out for help. “Kind sir, help me! Help me, please! My poor old mother fell and broke her leg and can’t get up. Won’t you stop and help me get her to the doctor in the village, please?”

And oftentimes, a kindly man might draw his horses to a stop, taking pity on the sweet young lass. “Certainly! Climb into my carriage! Point the way.” But there was often nothing left of such a hapless sort come morning – only bits of bridle, possibly the heel of a boot.

(Resalkis are among the many nature spirits in Russian mythology. They were usually found near water. They were twice as terrifying as a were-wolf or a boogie-man because they didn’t alter their appearance when they ripped you into shreds and gobbled every morsel — all except that braid, the little hunk of boot! I was not raised in Russia but my mother’s family was and so I heard these stories as kid. At times, it made you not quite trust your aunts!)

These Resalki are contemporary. By tradition, they were rosy cheeked and usually blonde, dressed in flowered skirts. I figure if they’re still lurking in the Russian countryside today, they’ve upgraded to a modern form of dress!

Tombstones from around Chicagoland (USA)
The women are brushes I composed from various elements

Artwork Comments

  • UncaDeej
  • Nadya Johnson
  • Mynybee
  • Nadya Johnson
  • Ushna Sardar
  • Nadya Johnson
  • HKBlack
  • MedILS
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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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