JIM DORAN

The Assistant of Dr. F

All the best magicians have the best assistants, and Dr. F was no exception. And while his whole story is lost in the ether, Kitty Wampus didn’t share his fate. She worked with Dr. F during his years working as an illusionist. It’s assumed she stopped working with him when he turned his attention to conjuring and more traditional forms of Magic. It’s also unclear just how close they were.

This piece is pretty much imposible to photograph well. The container is a plastic specimen jar a friend gave me.

PORT AUTHORITY in the LAND OF THE DEAD

No one is lonely in the Land of the Dead.

This is part two of “In the Eye of the Beholder,” where I consider the mourning aspect of “eye miniatures.” It would be a fine thing if we could still visit with our Loves by gazing into their painted eye portrait, should we become separated by the veil of physical mortality.

Here, we have a street scene at the Port Authority of the Land of the Dead (inside another eye rinse cup) complete with hanging skull lanterns, musicians and the smallest raccoon I’ve yet to draw.

 

In the Eye of the Beholder

In 1785, Prince George of Wales fell in love with Maria Fitzherbert, a commoner. Because their love was forbidden, they had miniatures of their eyes painted for one another. They would carry these everywhere so that they could always gaze deeply into them without fear of being caught by the royal family. Even though Prince George was married to someone else, he was buried wearing Maria’s eye painting around his neck. Eye miniatures, or Lover’s Eyes, remained popular through Victorian times. They eventually took on a morbid quality and were worn as mourning jewelry (more on that here).

There’s something very appealing about carrying a part of your Love with you everywhere you go.

I’m participating in a show of  eye miniatures in Germany. This diorama is in a vintage eye rinse cup; a beautiful woman as seen in her lover’s eye. The iris is translucent.