Suddenly I felt patriotism! My thoughts turned to St. Mary’s Church in Gdansk, where you can admire charming figural astronomical clock. It consists of three parts: very complex calendar, figures’ theatre and multi-colored zodiacal part. When it came into being (XV century), it was the largest astronomical clock in the world!
Interestingly, the clock is surrounded by many legends. First of them, a little bit macabre, says that jealous residents of Gdansk didn’t want Master Düringer to make similar work elsewhere in the world, so they made him blind. Then, when the mechanism began to fail, they boldly asked him for help in repair. Master agreed, hit where necessary, so that the clock fell to pieces, then he cursed and committed suicide. Since then the clock was just a decoration.
According to another legend, the clock had magical property of accurate measurement date and time of death of person, who asked. In the beginning it was clerics’ secret, but as news spread quickly, people found out about it and started to gather under the clock. The information that they received caused extreme emotions, which resulted in general confusion. Authorities decided to solve the problem by breaking the mechanism. Since then anyone who tried to run the clock met personal tragedies and misfortunes.
Indeed, quite a long time the clock was just a decoration. But after 437 years, now it’s functioning well!
Inspired by this work, I made – of course much smaller – zodiacal clock face. The effects of my several days’ brandishing brush and straining sight you can see above and in the gallery. Multi-colored palette, smiling faces and muzzles, otherworldly creatures – all full of joy!