Calliope by Lyla Clayre

Calliope by Lyla Clayre

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Calliope is the muse of justice and serenity. She is the muse that according to myth Homer called on to help write the Iliad and The Odyssey. “Kalliope (Calliope), she in whose heart was steadfast wisdom throned”

There are nine streets in the Lower Garden District named after the Muses of Greek mythology—the inspirational goddesses of literature, science, and the arts. These classical street names are thanks to New Orleans City Planner, Smuggler + Pirate Barthelemy Lafon, who had grand plans for the LGD to resemble the classical aesthetic of European cities, giving streets names like Coliseum, and of course, the muses. Leave it to who else than Art Director @jamielehr to have this local history up her sleeve.⁣

New Orleans' rich history of muses isn’t limited to the street names of the LGD. The @kreweofmuses was of course our city’s first-ever womxns’ Mardi Gras krewe. Kim Bernadas’ bronze sculpture ‘Birth of a Muse’ is located Terpsichore finger park near Prytania, and was the first work commissioned by the Arts Council following Hurricane Katrina. We were reminded of this by who else than the sitter of this sculpture, Klay Klee who visited Gemini just yesterday. ⁣

"According to myth, poets, artists, scholars, and musicians would call on their particular Muse to ask for inspiration and guidance in their creative process.” The divine feminine energy we feel from the the countless womxn who own businesses in the LGD inspires our work  greatly—trailblazers like @centurygirlvintage, @saintclaudesocialclub, @sundayshop, @monominshop, @thegoodshop, @trashydiva, @cherrycoffeeroasters, @sprucenola, @jaciblue, @tchoupbags, @teawitchcafe, @goodsthatmatter we could go on! So, as Gemini is Femaissance’s first exhibition in the LGD, we couldn’t think of a stronger way to marry project and place than with Clayre’s muses. An homage to both the classical and the current, the 9 Muses fuses local and art history with womxn who inspire us, in a thought-provoking body of work that continues to demonstrate what it means to be muse-worthy today, and celebrates the power of female collaboration. ⁣

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