Shiva is one of the main gods of the Hindu religion. When all is said and done, there are millions and millions of deities in the Hindu pantheon, so I guess Shiva is pretty special. In truth, my first exposure was in Final Fantasy VII when I summoned her using red materia to vanquish some foes. As one might imagine, Square Enix’s interpretation of Shiva is pretty off the map and hyper-sexualized but whatever. Shiva, like many (if not all?) gods of the Hindu religion is both man and woman and takes many different forms. As the god of destruction, Shiva represents positive and negative changes that range from the introspective to the more physical world and is often referred to as “The Destroyer”.
I’ll be honest, my knowledge of Shiva is very limited, so if you’re interested I suggest digging a little further on your own. Obviously, I have chosen to depict Shiva in a fully female form, but like I said, he/she has attributes of both sexes…annnnnd I’m not scholar of religion up in this piece.
FYI: from Stardusted.Tumblr.com: “Heeey, so Hindu follower of your blog here! So Shiva. Shiva himself is the male manifestation of the universe, and his wife Parvati is the female manifestation of the universe. They each have 108 forms/names. The genderfluid version you’re talking about is Ardhanarishvara (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ardhanarishvara). As you see, if you read the article, it’s pretty complicated- and it made me really uncomfortable to see Shiva used for fashion this way. I know you probably meant no disrespect, but Shiva isn’t a woman. (and let’s not even get into the video game)”
1. Dress by Marchesa, shoes by Tsumori Chisato
2. Dress by Peter Pilotto, shoes by Alexander McQueen
3. Dress by Mary Katrantzou, shoes by Altuzarra
Gothic architecture is aggressive, dark, tall and at times ominous. That wasn’t by accident, especially in the case of religious architecture. Cathedrals, churches and other religious buildings stood not only as places of worship and business, but as a monument to the religion they served. The spires on the tallest towers reach higher to the kingdom of heaven (if you’re into that sort of thing) and dwarf any worshiper who sets foot inside.
Despite the aggressive appearance and nature of these buildings, they were also designed to let in the light. Amidst the dark recesses of apses, vaulted ceilings and cloisters the stained glass windows let in light, illuminating the space. Huge bursts of color break through the otherwise dark and grim spaces to illuminate the building and in theory, the people inside.
Today we visited the Sao Paulo Cathedral, in the heart of Old Sao Paulo. The timing was perfect and as we exited, the sun began to lower, shooting beams through the stained glass windows—brightening the mosaics, reflecting on the floors and offering a bit of optimism to the many that come to pray. I tried my best to capture a few of the dark spots and present the cathedral in a more illuminated way.
I’m really letting my architecture freak flag fly here in Sao Paulo and I’m totally cool with that.
Ahoy mateys! So, as Textbook is now almost a year and half old, I seem to be running out of ideas. Luckily, the seasons of fashion change giving me new ways to experiment. Having said that, I’d like to revisit Joan of Arc. Our heroine is responsible for bringing a nation together in a time of great crisis and unrest. As fate would have it, political turmoil and intrigue put Joan to a cruel fate and she was burned as a witch and heretic by the English. Of course, one wonders how exactly Joan would fair in this age? Would she have an epic twitter following? A life-casting blog? Or perhaps she’d be a commanding officer, either way you can’t deny her lasting impression on the world.
1. Peasant Joan
Dress by Aquilano Rimondi, shoes by Peter Pilotto
2. To battle! Raawwrr!
Dress by Rodarte, shoes by Alexander McQueen
3. St. Joan
Dress by Alexander McQueen, shoes by Rodarte
And as I said, I’ve been finding it very difficult to come up with new characters…I implore you to leave suggestions in my ask box and thank you kindly for all those already sent! You can also e-mail them to me. Enjoy your weekend, Tumblr!
All images from Vogue.