On a Saturday morning in December 2010 the cosmos and the spirit world were swirling with what they wanted said. The cosmos had kept its biggest secret and its ability to solve its own enigma. It had held for over 500 years from the Renaissance (longer if we take it back to its feminine traumatic Levant roots) its preparedness to rapt us in astonishment with its recondite truths hidden in plain sight, a rainbow of a paradox in how it does not disarrange or throw out of order what humans do or force, it does not need to, as everything comes together and nothing can throw it off of its glorious path. It creates and seeks beauty. Extreme beauty. And it knows how to bring it forth, its sweetest and most thunderstruck revelation.
John Mayer and Shiloh Richter were coming to know each other from the 1st of April 2010. On April 2, the morning after they first looked at one other, Shiloh was taking photographs of seagulls landing on her hotel room balcony in Vancouver, Canada. She was writing a screenplay about a girl born with wings that she had started in 2008, and these close-up carriers were photographic inspiration. That morning of the 4th of December, eight months later, when there was a great deal of internal confusion over why all hell had just broken loose in people who were not directly involved but who were desperately trying to stop what was happening, Shiloh was taking photographs of a fountain of sculptured birds in flight splashing and dancing in the real fountain water on the San Antonio Riverwalk. There was serene, painful beauty and intrinsic hope amongst the outward populace chaos.
And here is where we begin to leave the realm of that harsh, falsely-imprisoned reality which seeks to violently showcase its own pained emptiness and own, control, and punish its believing inhabitants, into a vortex of the about-to-be-universally-uttered from a very long silence. Two days before Shiloh was at the peace fountain, Roy Doliner, the author of The Sistine Secrets: Michelangelo’s Forbidden Messages in the Heart of the Vatican (2009) in Rome unveiled at a press conference for the first time seen publicly, a terracotta model that he had discovered and identified that Michelangelo had made with his own hands in preparation of planning his Madonna della Pietà, the heart-gashing Pietà inside St. Peter's. That was December 2nd. The very next night of the 3rd of December John was in Greenwich Village at the Village Underground (formerly Gerdes Folk City where Bob Dylan had first played), playing some new songs he had written between August and December--when the glutinous death trap for public attention was set by Taylor Swift to push herself into the starring role of a love story that was not hers, not hers to choose, and lives not hers to choose the direction of. If she couldn't have it for herself, at least, she thought, she could shit all over it all. The universe obliged and gave her all the attention one person could ever get. The lie was believed and populations quoted it as fact as if, although a lie, they had experienced it themselves. Music shifted and no longer delved into solving the heart, but shifting blame for screaming, lying, stealing, and hate. Millions of voices chimed in, repeating the death chants. Men were lost. All that John had accomplished was erased as if the extraordinary beauty and wild breaking through of it had never happened. His gorgeous youth was shattered--again. John's fame became hers instead, and the story, too. I had asked John in the summer if I could speak out for him about what the press had gotten wrong in January. He wanted to go inward. She took his voice, just as Homer said would happen, he the knowing trickster, the eternal prophet that moves with the cosmos, just as Dante, in this line, too said. She moved to take all of his moments, memories, titles, ideas, words, and songs as her own, and still does, the fans screaming not knowing the hard won, sweet, innocent musical heritage she was and continues to be violently violating, raping. Homer said the death voices would repeat the voices of the master artists and cosmic Muses endlessly, desperate not to stop because she has nothing of her own to say, would have to fall into the vast vacuum of dark emptiness inside, and they, the Sirens, cannot see what is actually happening (the much more real reality) and only try to bring their own death and pain on everyone.
One of the new songs that John played that night in Greenwich Village for the first time, the day after the unveiling of the Pietà model in Rome, was "A Face to Call Home." For the first time, John knew where home was. I was certain of it, too. We finally knew. The compasses were set. This whole time in the cosmos was during a Jupiter Uranus--the crown, the justice, and the 'Shocking Awakener," an exact description of Michelangelo and his secrets. It was in the anaretic--critical degree of the spiritual, Pisces, and at exactly 0˚ of Aries, the beginning of the zodiac and the house of warring, transforming Mars. In exact opposition was Saturn on John and Shiloh's conjunct anaretic Venus and Moon at 29˚ Virgo (lost feminine abundance), conjunct John's Rising Sign and Shiloh's triple conjunction of the deep foundational transformative Pluto, critical Moon, and Uranus (the radical conjunction of the 60s in its final phase)--thus Uranus in 2010, the shocking awakener in opposition with itself, too.
The days of the 3rd and 4th of December also go back to the birth of Jesus and a Saturn Jupiter conjunction on those exact days, the night of the 3rd, the early morning of the 4th that astronomers showed in Greenwich, England would have been bright enough of a sighting to be considered the Star of Bethlehem in 7 B.C.
Where John played that night in Greenwich Village was the exact spot where Shiloh had been in July, and three blocks up was Willa Cather's neighborhood of her life and stories that would be stolen by Truman Capote to make her "breakfast at the Brevoort" into Breakfast at Tiffany's, which Shiloh would discover over the course of this time in studying Willa, but also forced to learn and uncover narcissistic personality disorder and its reasons for rampant plagiarism when it cannot do genius on its own. The exact same thing had happened sixty-three years before in the same neighborhood, following Willa's death when she could not speak about it. Or so one would think. Ah, the cosmos is amazing. On Bleecker St. Shiloh bought a pink wrap not realizing it is in the ending of Audrey's Funny Face in Paris which also starts in Greenwich Village.
"Nothin' shakin' on Shakedown Street Used to be the heart of town Don't tell me this town ain't got no heart You just gotta poke around"
And so we go to a different street that would lead up to the iconic opening 5th Avenue scene in Breakfast at Tiffany's--which is not in Truman's novella, but is in Willa's--the tell-tale sign that both Audrey Hepburn and screenwriter George Axelrod knew what they were doing in turning things from the dark and ugly towards the transcendent, radiant, iconic, beautiful. In Willa's narrative Death Comes for the Archbishop there is a very real recognition scene in the Garden of the basilica in Santa Fe in the chapter "The Month of Mary." Here is a small excerpt:
"Father Joseph closed his eyes against the sunlight, and Father Latour stood lost in thought, drawing the plume of tamarisk blossom absently through his delicate, rather nervous fingers. His hands had a curious authority, but not the calmness so often seen in the hands of priests; they seemed always to be investigating and making firm decisions. The two friends were roused from their reflections by a frantic beating of wings. A bright flock of pigeons swept over their heads to the far end of the garden, where a woman was just emerging from the gate that led into the school grounds; Magdalena, who came every day to feed the doves and to gather flowers. The Sisters had given her charge of the altar decoration of the school chapel for this month, and she came for the Bishop’s apple blossoms and daffodils. She advanced in a whirlwind of gleaming wings, and Tranquilino dropped his spade and stood watching her. At one moment the whole flock of doves caught the light in such a way that they all became invisible at once, dissolved in light and disappeared as salt dissolves in water. The next moment they flashed around, black and silver against the sun. They settled upon Magdalena’s arms and shoulders, ate from her hand. When she put a crust of bread between her lips, two doves hung in the air before her face, stirring their wings and pecking at the morsel."
It is Willa's incarnation, in the flesh, of her La Madeleine.
In 2008 Shiloh visited Santa Fe and not realizing it in the moment, and on the weekend of the Grammys, stepped into Willa Cather's photograph of the Basilica of this very scene. The street is San Francisco St. (or Shakedown St.). Willa was staying at the La Fonda hotel in 1925 and in 2008 across the street was a camera shop. At the end of the block, the end of the street which is in the middle of the street, is the basilica and the statue of Willa's archbishop. Behind him, this character in the excerpt, the architect of the cathedral and his garden, is this Garden (which now contains sculptures of Jesus's crucifixion Stations of the Cross). Shiloh walking across this street in front of Willa's hotel and basilica was exactly 500 years from the year, 1508, that Michelangelo began painting the Sistine Ceiling framing the meaning of Shiloh's name. While Willa's word and scenes had been stolen in New York City (in 1957-58), but this her place of inspiration of where her works were rooted, there was a bit of a rolling on the ground trickster giggling with cosmic laughter. Michelangelo had even painted the ceiling to correspond with the verses of Jacob's prophecy which contains the name Shiloh, Genesis: 49:8-12, he painting from 1508 to 1512. His Pietá, nearby in the basilica, had been completed in 1499, five hundred years from the beginning of John's career. The verse of the prophecy above the chapel entrance door, Genesis 49:10 contains both John's and Shiloh's birthdates, 10.77 and 7.10.70.
And that is just the beginning.
Here are digital downloads of the photographs Shiloh took that day on 4th of December 2010, the day she first heard "A Face to Call Home."
"I am an architect Of days that haven't happened yet I can't believe a month is all it's been You know my paper heart The one I filled with pencil marks I think I might've gone and inked you in
Little by little, inch by inch We built a yard with a garden in the middle of it And it ain't much, but it's a start You got me swaying right along to the song in your heart And a face to call home A face to call home You got a face to call home"
The fountain in San Antonio is also at a historic site from the same time period, a Catholic nuns Ursuline Academy, as in Willa's narrative.
INSTANT DIGITAL DOWNLOAD: This listing is for a DIGITAL DOWNLOAD items only. No physical items will be shipped to your address. With printable art, you can quickly and flexibly enhance your space. Simply download the art and print from the convenience of your home, at your local print shop, or use an online service that delivers straight to your door.
WHAT'S INCLUDED: Your purchase gives you access to 13 high-resolution JPG files.
RESOLUTION: Enjoy the intricate details of the artwork in a high-quality averaging 2500 x 2000 pixel resolution & 300 DPI for each print, ensuring a crisp, vibrant viewing experience every time.
TERMS: This artwork is for PERSONAL USE ONLY with COPYRIGHT REMAINING WITH SHILOH RICHTER. Feel free to print and share this piece with your loved ones as gifts, but we kindly ask that you respect the artist's work and refrain from reselling it on Etsy, any other marketplace, or minting it as NFT.
Please do not share your purchase or upload the files to file-sharing websites. Any commercial use is strictly prohibited. Unauthorized reproduction or reselling of the artwork is not permitted without the artist's permission.
Given the digital nature of this product, returns or cancellations will not be accepted. However, our priority is your complete satisfaction, so please don't hesitate to reach out if you encounter any issues or have any queries.