Studies in the Maternal, an online literary journal, have published a piece by Sarah Lightman, titled Annunciations and Pedalos. Sarah describes a curated selection of drawings, and how having a child has changed her art.
‘In the painting, the Virgin Mary is happily reading but is then interrupted by the arrival of the Archangel Gabriel, who announces her pregnancy to her. Duccio frames Mary in this protected, quiet and calm space just as her world is about to be transformed. I wanted to focus on this moment of interruption, at a time when I was beginning to carve out a space for myself as an artist again. In my experience, maternal interruption was not just a momentary pause in autonomy, lasting the duration of pregnancy. For me, the interruption lasted about 3 years. I wanted to warn Mary that she might not have that quiet time again and that it might take years until she could read a book of her choice. Perhaps, like me, Mary’s only reading materials and reading time during this period might be the Thomas The Tank Engine series.’
See Sarah’s artwork and read the rest of her essay on the journal website HERE.