Saturday, October 9, 2010


The Garden of Mecca

Helen Martins

Owl House

Fugard's inspiring portrait of an aging artist in an isolated South African village, is considered by many to be his finest work. It is the story of a self-taught artist pursuing a vision that is neither understood nor accepted by her neighbors in the small Afrikaner community where she lives.
"The Road to Mecca" is based on the life of a woman named Helen Martins, who lived in Nieu Bethesda, South Africa, where Athol Fugard also owned a house. After the death of her husband, "Miss Helen" began to fill her house and yard with fantastical sculptures of camels, wise men, owls and all kinds of other creations.
The walls of her house were covered with bright paint mixed with crushed glass, so the rooms glittered with their own special light.

"The Mecca metaphor speaks to the relationship between imagination and freedom. Miss Helen's candles illuminate the deep connection between creativity and light."


jyost said...

I really enjoyed the play when I saw it at the San Diego Rep. I thought the actors did a fantastic job, and I found the play very thought-provoking. Although I had seen the play several years ago at the Cassius Carter, I didn't remember a whole lot about it, so it was a good one to revisit.


rivian said...

Thank you Joan for following SHARE ART & for your comment.

creescudder said...

I liked this work, the use of collected "things." (In my own work, I use my "dog walk materials" as inspiration for paintings or as actual objects in my work.) I gained a new perspective from seeing this work. How I wish I had space!