This is a portrait of her cat Maya. When Tracey gave me pictures of Maya, I immediately saw a being of wisdom and an almost regal quality... a cat with what seemed to be a lasting ancient soul. The connection to mythology, then, was easily made for me.
Here she is depicted as the ancient Egyptian goddess Bast.
Bast is the mother of all cats, which were Egypt's most sacred animals. She is the goddess of women, cats, and secrets. She is also the goddess of the sun, enlightenment, truth, lesbians, bounty, the household, sex, fertility, music, dance and the arts.
Bast's holy city Bubastis was said to possess the land's greatest temple. In ancient Egypt, all cats that died were carried to certain sacred houses where they were embalmed and then buried in the city of Bubastis. Bast is often identified with Artemis or Diana who is also called the mother of all cats.
Thank you Tracey for allowing me to sit with, interpret and enjoy the memory of a being who so profoundly touched your life.
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