Shells of Fantasy

Heidy GonzÁlez Photos: Boris Muriedas, on: Fashion
Shells of Fantasy

One of the most beautiful paintings by Sandro Botticelli, The Birth of Venus (1486), shows the fully grown Venus, goddess of love and beauty, emerging from the sea riding on a shell.

Shells of FantasySeashells have been used as jewellery or in other forms of adornment since prehistoric times. Phoenician coins in the Second Century BCE boasted seashells, and they can also be found in ancient architectural design as well as modern facades, sculptures and almost all types of art.

Coming as they do from the depths of the sea, shells have played a part in religion and spirituality. In Chinese Buddhism, shells are considered a symbol of good luck, safe journey and fertility. For Aztecs, it is a symbol of the feminine womb, hence, of human birth.

Shells of FantasyMore such allusions are found in 12th Century Christian iconography as well as in coats of arms. Many have been the artists inspired by the protective shield of molluscs. From aquariums to gastronomy, seashells excite the imagination and Cuban artists are not impervious to their creative power. Cuban craftswoman Olaida Mena roams the sands of Cojimar Beach near Havana every day at dusk Many have been the artists inspired by the protective shield of molluscs. From aquariums to gastronomy, seashells excite the imagination and Cuban artists are not impervious to their creative power.

Cuban craftswoman Olaida Mena roams the sands of Cojimar Beach near Havana every day at dusk looking for the treasured shells. She shows her gratitude for the gifts provided by the waves of the sea by impregnating the shells with colour to heighten their charm.

Shells of FantasyShe then sets them in earrings, necklaces and rings to create exquisite jewellery that enhance feminine beauty with a touch of tropical elegance.



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