GRAY FACE AND EVE
GRAY FACE AND EVE, my novel-in-progress about twelfth century sculptor Gislebertus and his carving of Eve has been on my mind lately. It has been in progress for way too many years! During a summer of studying gothic cathedrals with the great architectural historian Stephen Murray, I went on a weekend side visit to Romanesque Burgundy, and that changed everything. I was inspired by all of Gislebertus's stone carvings at the Cathedral of St. Lazarus in Autumn, but especially his magnificent Eve, and began to imagine what the life of such a remarkable artist/craftsman might have been like in twelfth century Burgundy. What were his origins? What was his apprenticeship like, and his whole life's journey? Who did he love? And then I began to wonder what his magnificent Eve might have to say about things, from a more timeless perspective, after she was removed from the cathedral in the 18th century for being too sensuous. She was hidden away as a piece of structural stone in another building for more than a century, before she was accidentally rediscovered. Just look at the woman in the carving and you can imagine that she didn't take kindly to such treatment. In fact, once I began to listen to her, I learned that she had quite a strong opinion about it. Now I think she is almost as annoyed with me as with the bishops. It's time to finish the story.