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Solomon Awaits the Arrival of the Queen of Sheba   Oil and silkscreen on canvas 37" X 28 1/2"   Read More...
The queen of Sheba (probably present day Yemen, Ethiopia and Egypt) had heard of the great wisdom of King Solomon of Jerusalem. She travels with a large retinue and phenomenal gifts, from one world, in essence, to another, to meet and query him. 
In the biblical version she simply returns home after their meeting. In the ancient compilation of Ethiopian legends, the Kebra Negast (The Glory of Kings), however, Solomon seduces Sheba and she gives birth to a son. 
In this painting I’ve used this open-ended story to tell of something more personal. It is a stained glass window narrating the anxious wait of Solomon for a queen of phenomenal beauty. Next to him, his protective demon carries a poppy, the flower of forgetfulness, for the queen. 
My father, a heart surgeon, lived in Texas. Passing through New York on the way to the battlefields of the second world war, he and fellow officers went to a nightclub where my mother, a glamorous and temperamental singer was performing. She was quite well known at the time, working with popular big bands like Russ Morgan's and even starring in Duke Ellington and Bobby Mercer's Broadway version of the Three Penny Opera.

Her mother was in the audience that night and was introduced to the officers. She, in turn, introduced them to her daughter. My father was smitten, she much less so. They corresponded during the war and afterwards, she was convinced by her mother to marry him, leaving the life she knew, to live in San Antonio, a steaming backwater, by her account. 
Behind the central figure in the painting are the shards of what he has on offer in this “backwater.” In his hands he holds what he hopes might keep her.