White Vine Letter J, gouache on paper, 23K gold leaf, Gilded white wood frame, Acid free cream matte, 10in h x 11in w
Maris Fiondella is an illuminator and retired teacher of medieval literature. Studying the Middle Ages introduced her to beautiful illuminated manuscripts with gilded letters and pages ornamented with images of animals and birds, vines and flowers. She began to paint decorated letters from a desire to imitate this practice, especially with regard to the Celtic tradition of illumination, which often exhibits a delightful sense of humor. She studies manuscript illumination and gilding at the St. Michael’s Institute for Sacred Arts on Enders Island, off Mystic CT. Her current work includes decorated letters taken from Ireland’s Book of Kells, White Vine letters in the Italian Renaissance style, and holiday Gold Box letters.