Asterion Commemorative Stamp

"Would you believe it, Ariadne? The Minotaur scarcely defended himself."



Asterion Commemorative Stamp, hand embroidered, original design. Completed in 42 hours.

Shockingly, this piece has nothing to do with Athena. Really it's Poseidon who got his panties in a wad and caused all the trouble. I'm not going to focus so much on the myth here, but there are some interesting elements I'd like to address. Firstly, Daedalus, (Icarus' father) was the one who made the hollow wooden cow statue that Queen Pasiphae hid in so she could have sex with Poseidon's bull. She became pregnant and gave birth to Asterion the Minotaur. She was also Ariadne's mother, making Ariadne and Asterion half siblings.
As far as the labyrinth goes, some sources claim Daedalus created it as a "dancing ground" for Ariadne. However, he is always attributed as creating the labyrinth to house Asterion.
Ariadne is sometime viewed as a weaving goddess, which makes her place in fiber art particularly relevant.
Also, Medea shows up in the Theseus myths, and she's pretty interesting too.

The version of this story I'm most fascinated with is Jorge Luis Borges' short story, The House of Asterion.
It opens with the narrater describing his house, and rebutting common misconceptions about it and himself.
"It is true I never leave my house, but it is also true that it's doors (whose number is infinite) are open day and night to men and to animals as well. Anyone may enter."
He goes on to say, "Another ridiculous falsehood has it that I, Asterion, am prisoner. Shall I repeat that there are no locked door, shall I add that there are no locks?"
He recounts how one time he did venture outside, but the commoners "prayed, fled, prostrated themselves..." He believes this is because he is royalty, (his mother is the queen).
He talks about how in his loneliness, he plays a game where another Asterion visits him. He guides him through his home, describing each room, and tells him how every nine years nine people come to him, "so that I may deliver them from evil."
Just as he delivers the sacrificial people, he too awaits his "redeemer" who will finally kill him and free him from his house. The last line is delivered by Theseus who reveals Asterion's identity when he says, "Would you believe it, Ariadne? The Minotaur scarcely defended himself."

This piece completes the triptych along with Medusa and Arachne. Like the other ones, this piece will be turned into a pillow sham, literally transforming the embroidery into a bedtime story and enhancing it's nightmarish qualities.


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