January 24, 2019

Our New Header

Many thanks to John Viola for designing our beautiful new header. Replete with southern Italian imagery and symbolism, the illustration perfectly captures the spirit of the blog. It is an honor and a privilege to have such a well respected and important leader of our community take notice of our work and believe enough in our mission to take the time to create original artwork for us. John has always been supportive of our work and in the past has allowed us the use of some of his photos, but this is above and beyond generous. He's a true friend and we cannot thank him enough for this wonderful gift.
Unfortunately the blog’s template doesn’t allow the header to expand, so we’re posting the image here, highlighting some details, in an attempt to circumvent the limitation and allow viewers to get a better look.
On the right side of the header we see the demigod Heracles, son of Zeus and Alcmene, reclining on a sun-drenched hilltop somewhere in Sicily. Swathe in the skin of the Nemean lion, the burly hero holds a golden fleur-de-lis, the ancient symbol of the Royal House of Bourbon. At his side lies a toppled pillar and a bust of Archimedes, Sicily’s greatest inventor and mathematician. In the background Mt. Etna smolders.
To the left, we see the Siren Partenope emerging from the Sea holding aloft the coat-of-arms of the Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies. Hovering above is Tyche, the Greek goddess of fortune and prosperity. Her mural crown with an unbridled horse on the crest is the emblem of the city of Naples. The tutelary deity also carries a golden shield emblazoned with the Trinacria, the ancient symbol of Sicily. Behind them sprawls Napoli, the capital of the ancient kingdom, and her beautiful Bay. Looming in the distance is sleeping Vesuvius.