Cactus Gallery LA
OLD WIFE AND HER FAMILIAR by artist Ulla Anobile
Paper mache, acrylics, embroidered felt, 6 1/2" x 6 1/2"
The term 'old wife' was often used in the witch-hunting days of women suspected of nefarious activities. In reality, they were often women who worked as village midwives, herbalists and healers. When the medical profession - and the spread of scientific thinking that divided body and spirit, facts and nature - became licensed and stratified, the witch hunts also spread in waves throughout Europe. The saying 'old wives' tales' comes from this vision of the intuitive healing abilities as inaccurate and suspect.
My OLD WIFE AND HER FAMILIAR has the misfortune of having two strikes against her: she has a black cat 'familiar', or spirit animal (often just a pet), and a mole on her face.