Hart & Soul

24 Mar 2010 795 views
 
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photoblog image The Weight of the World

The Weight of the World


You could easily have missed him altogether,
scrunched up near the ceiling of the huge church
(way too high for your vacuum hose!).

Astrid said, "He has the whole weight of the world on his shoulders!"

(or his head, as the case might be)

Inside the Martini church in Groningen, Holland.


The Weight of the World


You could easily have missed him altogether,
scrunched up near the ceiling of the huge church
(way too high for your vacuum hose!).

Astrid said, "He has the whole weight of the world on his shoulders!"

(or his head, as the case might be)

Inside the Martini church in Groningen, Holland.


comments (54)

  • Ray
  • Thailand
  • 24 Mar 2010, 01:00
It is a strain, but he seems to be managing to hold up that part of the structure.

Fine image, Ginnie.
Ginnie Hart: Just grit and bear it, Ray! smile Thanks.
He could be the one part that, if removed, would bring the whole thing down!
Ginnie Hart: Exactly, Larry, but perish the thought!
  • Jennie
  • United States
  • 24 Mar 2010, 01:33
Great capture, Ginnie
Ginnie Hart: Thank you kindly, Jennie.
he could do with a dusting, well spotted
Ginnie Hart: That may be centuries of dust and grime, Derek? It would take a very tall extension ladder to reach it! smile
  • DrAW!
  • United States
  • 24 Mar 2010, 02:09
looks more like he needs to relieve himself tongue

nicely spotted
Ginnie Hart: I thought so, too, DrAW. grin Thanks and good to see you again.
  • crash
  • United States
  • 24 Mar 2010, 02:46
he looks like he's hiding !
Ginnie Hart: He was just a little munchkin of a thing, Ryan, and YES, did look like he was hiding. I sure wonder how he fits into ecclesiology!
  • Esther
  • Malaysia
  • 24 Mar 2010, 02:49
You are so observant, Ginnie! I hope he enjoys what he's doing!
Ginnie Hart: I try to look up all the time, Esther, where often lurk such treasures. I wonder, though, what his purpose is inside this church?
  • Astrid
  • Netherlands
  • 24 Mar 2010, 05:53
ha....yes I remember this little fella, when I am in a church I always look up and crack my neck, I smiled about the 'troubled' look on his face, well I would look the same if I was the one of a few to carry that roof......
It turned out to be a beautiful picture, but than I know your 'equipment' grin.
Ginnie Hart: Looking up always has it's rewards, MLMA, and this time we were not disappointed. I wonder what he was there for? Philine will probably know. smile And yes, you do know my "equipment" but you're the only one. grin
  • Louis
  • South Africa
  • 24 Mar 2010, 06:06
Hij is een hoekenpoeper. Moe je zien of hoe ie kijken - als een baby wat drukken.

Carrying a church on his head exerts a lot of pressure so to see smile
Ginnie Hart: Now Astrid is dying to translate hoekenpoeper to me. I think I get the picture. grin Thanks, Louis.
  • zed
  • Australia
  • 24 Mar 2010, 06:48
he might have the weight of the world on his head, but you have the steadiest hands in the world 1/25 at 260mm incredible
Ginnie Hart: It's the Image Stabilizer, Tony. I couldn't live without it! Thanks for your vote of confidence regardless.
greta details and sharpness Ginnie , hallo
Ginnie Hart: Grazie, Fabrizio.
  • Chris
  • England
  • 24 Mar 2010, 07:10
Very well observed Ginnie: he certainly looks as if he has all that weight to bear
Ginnie Hart: Thanks, Chris. I can hardly wait to find out from Philine about the purpose of him up there. A total puzzlement to me.
A delightful detail. That's what I like about churches is the wonderful details like this
Ginnie Hart: Me, too, Bill. Now I'm waiting for Philine to tell us what he's there for! smile
  • Elaine-
  • Canada
  • 24 Mar 2010, 08:18
ew ugly building trolls, never understood the concept lolol nice shot however!!!
Ginnie Hart: Especially inside a church, Elaine! It's like a bit of the pagan is there, if you know what I mean. Thanks.
Constipation springs to mind Ginnie,that face is pulled all over the world every day.
Ginnie Hart: You are so right, Mick. The state of affairs more than ever, it seems.
  • Theys
  • Belgium
  • 24 Mar 2010, 08:33
Pretty catch, a sculpture which carries the world on are back, beautiful day with you.
Ginnie Hart: It surew was fun to see this, Roland. Thanks.
It looks like he is trying very hard to lose something...
And he's not succesful -by the look of his face- if I might add!

hahah..
Ginnie Hart: HA, inderdaad, Nadiuska. Thank you kindly for stopping by and commenting. Are you learning much Dutch, I wonder, while here as a student? Soon I plan to start a Dutch language course and hope it will be just what the doctor ordered! :
  • anniedog
  • United Kingdom
  • 24 Mar 2010, 08:57
He looks positively repulsive and brings to mind things I'd rather not think of at breakfast! A great little detail, well spotted.
Ingrid
Ginnie Hart: HA! I can only imagine, Ingrid. I'm waiting for Philine to let us know what he's there for! Thanks.
It's making my eyes water (thinking male anatomy)

richard
Ginnie Hart: HAHA! I love it, Richard. grin
What a funny little character
Ginnie Hart: Isn't he, Chantal!
  • Frida
  • Sweden
  • 24 Mar 2010, 09:18
He's working hard to do his bit holding up the structure smile
Ginnie Hart: Definitely, Frida. I wonder if he had a helper on the other side??
  • spark
  • Australia
  • 24 Mar 2010, 09:33
wow Ginnie, what happens when he goes to tea? Well spotted and captured in what I should imagine would be a dark corner of the church
Ginnie Hart: It was in a center corner of one end of the nave, Spark, as I recall. Wish I could remember. Now I want to know if he had any friends helping him elsewhere in the church? Thanks.
What a funny little chap! In a church? It is not a religious scultpure is it? Not a cherub? Is it really to hold up the structure of the building? By his body language one would assume he could jump out of the wall any second now.

We have Ross Abbey here in Headford, close to where I live. There is a sculpture like this in the corner of a doorway. I just took photos of it last Sunday, will post tomorrow. That is supposed to be a celtic sort of sculpture which makes sense in this country. I will look up the specifics and post them with the photo.

Your photo is stunning! Very fascinating! I am highly intrigued by it.

Cheers, Marion
Ginnie Hart: Philine is our resident architectural buff, Marion, so I'm waiting for her take on this. It is definitely very intriguing...like sticking in a pagan influence inside of ecclesiology! Sure makes me wonder. Thanks for your own story, which I will look forward to seeing.
Very well spotted and captured Ginnie!
Ginnie Hart: Thank you kindly, Richard. Merci.
No wonder he's got a flat skull!
Ginnie Hart: HA! You got that right, Tom. smile
  • ruth
  • Michigan
  • 24 Mar 2010, 10:26
Someone had a great sense of humor! And you have a fine eye, and the composition is great, though that must have been difficult.
Ginnie Hart: You're very kind, Ruth. Thanks. This is when I'm very thankful for my 300 lens!
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 24 Mar 2010, 10:46
A wonderful find - yes, Astrid may be right -and he looks not very happy, but nobody can help him and take off this big burden! We all have our own little burdens, too! Oh, we needed a Heracles to do this work and some other tasks and jobs in our world!
Ginnie Hart: Oh yes, Philine. A nice Hercules might do the trick. smile
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 24 Mar 2010, 10:53
I have just read Flash and Flair photography's comment- carrying figures are usual in churches - in a technical/static and a symbolic sense -sometimes they are daemons symbolizing the evil, pagan influences like the Green man (VChris is here a spezi!) are possible, too -like eventually this 'ugly' figure -but I'm not sure and have to research some more...!
Ginnie Hart: The daemon/pagan idea is what I think, too, Philine. It's most interesting. It reminds me of when I worked with Cheyenne Native Americans years ago and watched the women do their beadwork. They would always have one bead situated wrong in the pattern or of the wrong color because they believed only the Great Spirit was perfect. To not add a "mistake" in their work would be heresy to them.
  • JJ
  • United States
  • 24 Mar 2010, 11:00
Super shot of the detail, love Astrids comment LOL

re my shot today, NZ has a lot of Hydro Electric dams harnessing the power from rivers
Ginnie Hart: So glad to hear the power is being harnessed, JJ! Thanks for sharing that. And thanks for commenting here again.
  • vintage
  • Australia
  • 24 Mar 2010, 11:28
Good one Ginnie well spotted
Ginnie Hart: Thank you kindly, Vintage.
Very well seen Ginnie
Ginnie Hart: Thank you kindly, Pam.
Weren't the sculpters full of fantasy in those days!?
a wonderful find!
Ginnie Hart: Oh yes, Wim. Inderdaad. I just wish I knew what he was there for!
It's good to see we English aren't the only ones to have these in our churches Ginnie, very well spotted on your part.
Ginnie Hart: Maybe YOU know what they're there for, Brian? To keep the daemons away? Thanks.
He does look like hes holding the church up, well spotted, he looks like he could be a little mischievous in the nicest way smile
Ginnie Hart: Yes, Linda, I agree. Philine thinks he might be like the daemons and gargoyles used to keep the evil spirits away. I'd love to learn more.
I was going to be very naughty, Ginnie and say that he looks as though he is doing toilet business.... but I won't say that! ha ha
Ginnie Hart: You're not the only one with a naughty mind, Paul. grin
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 24 Mar 2010, 13:42
Like yourself I would like to know more about this supporting figure- but, sorry, I didn't find any information about this sculpture - it could be a grotesque figure like the daemons and so-called 'gargoyles' (mostly waterspouts, but there are also ornamental figures) in medieval churches which are said to scare off and protect from any evil or harmful spirits. But in this case I'm not sure - maybe, we could ask the Stichting Martinikerk Groningen that publishes a tijdschrift "Miniatuur" about all topics refering to the church(www.martinikerk.nl) The medieval stone carvings may tell us some stories! A fascinating and provoking photo, indeed!
Yes, Brian Walbay is right- I recall similar figures in Lincoln Cathedral, Norwich Cathedral, but also in some churches on the eiland Gotland...
Ginnie Hart: I do think you're right, Philine. Kinda like an indoor gargoyle. I'm guessing we wouldn't see this in modern-day church architecture?!
  • blackdog
  • United Kingdom
  • 24 Mar 2010, 13:58
I know the feeling Ginnie, but I at least get to take a break once in a while ;o)
Ginnie Hart: HA! Good for you, Mike. We all need a break ever so often!
  • Alan
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 24 Mar 2010, 14:04
Astrid is right; he does look like that! Vacuuming. eh? Hmmmm... well, I've heard of it and I'm sure I have some device to do something like that at home... !
Ginnie Hart: HA! Everyone needs a good excuse not to vacuum, Alan. smile
  • sherri
  • Little Rock, Arkansas, United States of America
  • 24 Mar 2010, 14:57
Very unique element in the structure.
Ginnie Hart: We wouldn't see it in our modern church structures in America, Sherri, would we!
yes indeed he's got the while world on his head, must need a lot of Excedrin. Very well spotted Ginnie smile
Ginnie Hart: HA! I love it. It would make a great Excedrin ad, John, right?! smile Thanks for the smile.
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 24 Mar 2010, 15:46
Perhaps this being is a kind of 'Imp'. "Imps are often shown as small and not very attractive creatures. Their behavior is described as being wild and uncontrollable, much the same as fairies, and in some cultures they are considered the same beings, both sharing the same sense of free spirit and enjoyment of all things fun. It was later in history that people began to associate fairies with being good and imps with being malicious and evil." (Wikipedia, s.v. 'Imp'wink- a well- known story In GB is the tale of the Lincoln Imp who turned into a stone as you can see in the Cathedral (I think not too far away from Tracy's home- hHow may she be? I hope very well!)
Ginnie Hart: Ahhhh. You may be hitting on something here, Philine. I have suddenly thought of Dobby, the house-elf in the Harry Potter books: http://crosslandteam.com/dobby.jpg. This is fun, figuring it out. smile Thanks for all your hard work!
Very good!
Ginnie Hart: Thank you, kind sir.
LOL..He sure looks squashed.
Ginnie Hart: Poor little guy. I just told Philine he reminds me of Dobby, the house-elf in the Harry Potter books. grin
http://crosslandteam.com/dobby.jpg
  • Thea
  • Netherlands
  • 24 Mar 2010, 18:18
Mooi,indrukwekkend werk!
Heb genotensmile
Ginnie Hart: Hartstikke bedankt, Thea. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I wish your link worked so that I could see your own blog!
  • Cherise
  • Netherlands
  • 24 Mar 2010, 19:04
Hij ziet er niet al te blij uit, Ginnie grin
Ginnie Hart: Don't you wonder what he has seen all throughout the years, Cherise?! grin
Me parece una foto interesante y rara esta escultura, me ha sorprendido verla en tu blog no estoy acostumbrada a verte este tipo de fotos pero me gusta. Claro que lleva tu toque personal!!!

Un abrazo
Ginnie Hart: It's always fun to show something you might not expect, MA, so muchas gracias por tus palabras. smile
  • jude iron maiden
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 24 Mar 2010, 21:25
chad
come down from there Immediately
Ginnie Hart: HAHAHAHAHAHA! Too funny, JIM! grin
  • Oscar
  • France
  • 24 Mar 2010, 21:49
grin i like, What is it?
Ginnie Hart: Beats me, Oscar. It may be an imp or a daemon, an indoors gargoyle. Still trying to figure it out. smile
  • rian
  • United States
  • 25 Mar 2010, 03:33
nice catch.. he does look really uncomfortable in that pose.. grin
Ginnie Hart: I wonder how many parishioners are watching him during the service?? grin Thanks, Rian.
  • Petra
  • Netherlands
  • 25 Mar 2010, 11:17
good shot, goed gevonden
Ginnie Hart: Hartstikke bedankt, Petra.
  • SAVO
  • United Kingdom
  • 25 Mar 2010, 13:45
How do you see these things Ginnie? (perplexed high pitched voice) :p. You officially have 'the eye' badge from me (Thumbs up; Top Marks)!
Ginnie Hart: You sure know how to make my day, SAVO! What a sweetheart. smile
  • CherryPie
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 26 Mar 2010, 00:48
Wow! fantastic, he looks a little bit uncomfortable with all that weight!
Ginnie Hart: Kinda have to feel sorry for him, CP, right?! Thanks.
  • Jakki
  • United States
  • 27 Mar 2010, 16:27
Makes you wonder why he was placed there? Was the rest of the building built around him....was he just added as an after thought...are their more like him in the church?
Ginnie Hart: So many questions, Jakki. I'm the same way, wondering about such things all the time. He was the only one we saw like him. I'm guessing he was put there to scare away any evil spirits??! Thanks for stopping by and commenting.
this is fascinating to look at. I bet it was amazing in person.
Ginnie Hart: Yes, Heather, it was...and so easy to miss.

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