Wednesday, August 18, 2010



Healing Woman Stoneware Clay Sculpture

City type graveyard in Mexico

A few years ago when I visited Mexico, I was amazed at the large, almost city like, graveyards that I found there. Graveyards have always intrigued me so it was no surprise that I would fall in love with the ones I saw while on the grand tour of Great Britain and Ireland. The Celtic crosses that were in most graveyards reminded me of the legends of King Arthur and Merlin and all other stories related to Celtic lore. Below is a picture of the graveyard at Widecombe-in-the-Moor, the setting for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Hound of the Baskervilles.”

Graveyard at Widecombe-in-the-Moor

I was thrilled when I was able to view a most unusual shrine while in Ireland. St. Brigid’s Holy Well in the County Clare was absolutely captivating. While the outside was lovely and inviting, a trip through the cave like entrance revealed a sight I will never forget. All types of relics were placed on the walls. There were a lot of sculpted faces with cloth and beads attached and I couldn’t help but to notice how much they reminded me of my own work. I’ve posted pictures below of some of my sculptures so that you can see the resemblance. Little did I know when I created my “daughter of Antiquity series” that there would be a connection such as this.

Brigid's Holy Well

The offerings inside the cave were left by Pilgrims. It is very damp inside and the "rags", which are called “clooties” become ancient looking in a short period of time. They represent an illness to be cured. St. Bridgid was a daughter of a Druid priest. She is associated with water, poetry and healing.

Here is a link to more very clear views inside the cave. Clodagh's photos

Below are the hanging sculptures found inside the cave area at St. Brigid's Holy Well.

Now, here are some of my own "Daughters of Antiquity"


"Within the Within" sculpture

"Healing Woman" sculpture

I just posted Healing woman on Etsy where you can see more views of her. Here is the story I have given to her. I named her this before I knew of the legend of St. Bridgid at the Holy Well and how she was associated with healing. Coincidence? If so, there are a lot of coincidences in my life. I hope you have time to read one of my favorite posts which relates to another “coincidence” in my life. please click on Cigar Boxes.

Healing Woman

Dredged from antiquity..daughter of fire emerges with the healing power of the ages..Voices lost in time whisper to her of healing on many levels.
Energy rises from her very soul as she remembers the responsibility bestowed upon her.
She is the Studda Bubba, the witch, the magician and the shaman..the very essence of the healer.
She calls upon the great mother to share with her the wisdom of her yield.
Knowing she is merely the vehicle of a force far greater than she, and with great integrity, the healing woman delivers her cures as the power moves through her hands of light.

~Cheryl Dolby~

Recently, I found a beautiful blog relating to Celtic myth. I am amazed at the wealth of information I find when I go to Avalon Revisited Hope you enjoy it.

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  1. Such an interesting post Cheryl. I do love your sculptures, they really do carry so much story with them.

  2. I truly believe that wonderful things always happen when you least expect them and when you're 'open' to them! Coincidence? I think NOT, Cheryl! I just ran over to read your "cigar box" post. Fabulous!!! Hugs, Terri xoxo

  3. Hi Cheryl, I read also your post about the cigar boxes, wonderful story.... I would Love to see more of your boxes....I love them.

  4. Cheryl, As I love your reading your blog, I followed each and every link. Wow! I so enjoyed each link. Your cigar box story had me scratching my head. What gifts you have. Thank you for all the pictures. Healing Woman is ery special.


  5. Hi Cheryl. What an interesting post. I'll go see those links you listed. I enjoyed this post and just love your sculptures.

  6. What a great post! I LOVE your sculptures, Cheryl! That Mexican grave-yard is so interesting as is the holy well and cave of St. Brigid. I'm off to check out the links now.

  7. They say there are no coincidences! I believe a much higher power helped guide you in creating Healing Women. Beautiful!
    I must tell you I got goosebumps when I saw the photos of the cave. hum.....
    off to read your links!

  8. As always, your post was, like you, provocative, beautiful, and enlightening. I believe that some of us volunteered to guide. You are one of those. You give so much of yourself to each post, project, writing. Extraordinary. Thanks!

  9. Another magical enchanting creation.Thank you for your post and interesting photos.
    Hugs Anja

  10. I always see your passion and involvement in your creations with the inspiration you get from your knowledge. I think that is why I love your art. I see an affection in it.
    Thank you!

  11. You are so connected with the whole wide world Cheryl! It is no surprise to me that each and every place you visit has already been visited in your artwork.
    You just reminded me of the most lucid dreams I had...while reading The Mists of Avalon.
    That's a book I want to reread before I die.

    I will state the are an artist that connects with us all.

  12. These are incredible- I think you have such a gift for feeling the "soul" you want to portray in each piece and then making it so clear through the eyes....whether in a painting or a sculpture; the eyes you create always astound me! And to find such a connection during your travels must have been so inspiring!
    Off to look at your Cigar Boxes, and I'm sure, be amazed!

  13. Simply amazing photos!! Amazing that your spirit was already there before you even went.

  14. Breathtaking post and photos! The photos of the inside of the cave are amazing,the beads, the colors remind of a beautiful grotto I went to in the South last year. I just love the faces of your beautiful "daughters."A lovely, lovely post. Thank you!

  15. Amazing sculptures Cheryl, and what wonderful inspiration for you in those photographs. You have had so many amazing journeys :)

  16. Fabulous sculptures Cheryl and a really fascinating post. Here in the West Country we are of course very close to Avalon (possibly!) Well, I like to believe so. Knowing your interest in folklore I thought you might to take a look at these 2 young men who are modern day travelling bards in the UK! I am following their adventures -

  17. Coincidence... is full of them...good to pay attention...thank you for sharing your beautiful figures with us...hug, hug

  18. Such a fascinating post, Cheryl, with lots to appreciate and absorb. I love your beautiful sculptures - Nampeyo is simply stunning. I pursued your links early into this morning, and enjoyed myself immensely! I, too, love graveyards, and am always willing to stop when I pass one on a road trip. There are many near me in the California foothills - remnants of the old Gold Towns. The pictures of St. Bridgid's Holy Well held me spellbound... such faith has always intrigued me. Thanks for sharing your cigar boxes story and photos. As others have implied - nothing happens without reason. Wonderful, isn't it?!

  19. I believe your lovely stories that accompany your sculptures make them really come to life. What beautiful pieces you have offered for our enjoyment today.

    Those caves are practically magical. And the way you connected us to them is also magical. I'm one who loves graveyards. Each grave stone is different and has its own story and history.

  20. Hi Cheryl! Your "Daughters of Antiquity" are beautiful. I enjoyed finding out more of the spiritual connection you made, especially from what you witnessed when you visited the cave. Amazing! Thanks for sharing! :)

  21. are amazing! I am so happy to have stummbled upon you blog..gorgeous magnificent work!! wonderful to meet you!

  22. Daughters of Antiquity are breathtaking, Cheryl, for their soulful spirits illuminate. You have such a gift for giving true life to each creation you masterfully put together.
    Coincidence, I think not. Another thought to ponder ... these healing women healed with their hands, no? You me dear, have given them life ... with your hands ...

    Wishing you a beautiful and blissful weekend.

  23. Beautiful sculptures and the jewelry that you adorn them with is stunning. I think one finds coincidence when you are truly on your right path. Magic and art happen.

  24. it is all quite magical and mystical !!!

  25. Oh my, I'm wondering if my cigar box post brought yours to mind - the quality of those boxes and what you've done with them is incredible! I have a couple of wooden ones that I've purchased - the cardboard kind from the gas station are good for practice. Oh, and my friend stopped there to pick some up for me - her name is Marina!

  26. Cheryl great post and your "Healing women" is fantastic, like that you give your sculpture a story that tells something about them, thanks foe your sweet comments on my works.

  27. Those are very similar...but that does seem to ring true with whatever we think of as "collective unconscious" IMO. I heard about Brigid about five hears ago, in a spiritual direction training program. We had a wonderful Catholic sister who was in love with Brigid (she was a pretty far our sister) and told us all about the site....but seeing the pictures adds so much.

    Thanks, Cheryl! So fascinating and I love your Healing Woman.


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