Ae fond kiss; an exquisite fusion that bridges the realms of literature and art

An exquisite fusion that bridges the realms of literature and art

In the realm of artistic expression, where poetry meets the visual, André Romijn's masterful oil painting 'Ae Fond Kiss'emerges as a captivating embodiment of emotional depth and melancholic beauty. This grand creation, with its framed dimensions of 100 x 90 x 7 cm, serves as a poignant homage to the affecting verses of Scotland's poetic laureate, Robert Burns.

The genesis of this painting lies in the narrative of Burns' life, where his platonic relationship with Mrs. Agnes Maclehose, under the enchanting pseudonyms of 'Clarinda' and 'Sylvander,' became a canvas for unspoken emotions. Romijn deftly draws from Burns' penned emotions to craft an image that transcends time and language, capturing the essence of fleeting romance and lingering sorrow.

An unmistakably Scottish backdrop

At the heart of this composition, a side-profile portrait of an enchanting woman commands attention. Her gaze is introspective, her thoughts entwined with the ebb and flow of the grey sea that stretches before her. Against the rugged and unmistakably Scottish backdrop, she stands as an emblem of the human spirit's eternal search for solace amidst nature's majestic grandeur. In her grasp, a bouquet of Highland flowers, symbolic of resilience and fleeting beauty, adds layers of symbolism to the narrative.

The landscape is not merely a visual representation, but a sensory experience where one can almost feel the sea breeze and hear the distant call of seabirds. The rolling moors, rendered in Romijn's impressionistic brushstrokes, create an ethereal tapestry that envelops the central figure in a dream-like aura. The purples of the moorlands resonate with the melancholic undertones of Burns' verses, while the early signs of autumn depicted in the changing colours of the steep hills evoke a sense of transient beauty, mirroring the ephemeral nature of human connection.

The attention to detail extends beyond the canvas, as evidenced by the solid handmade frame that cradles the painting. This frame, a labour of craftsmanship in its own right, extends the visual narrative with its harmonious blend of style and substance. It elevates the painting, offering an immersive experience that resonates with the inherent emotions of the artwork.

Weaving a tale of longing, love, and loss

In 'Ae Fond Kiss' André Romijn eloquently bridges the realms of literature and art, weaving a tale of longing, love, and loss. This painting stands not merely as pigment on canvas, but as a vessel through which the unspoken words of Burns find voice in visual poetry. It is an invitation to ponder the mysteries of human connections, to explore the landscapes of both heart and earth, and to cherish the fleeting beauty that graces our lives.


Scottish poet and lyricist

Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796), also known familiarly as Rabbie Burns, was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is in a "light Scots dialect" of English, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these writings his political or civil commentary is often at its bluntest.

After the publication of his collected poems, the Kilmarnock volume, Burns regularly travelled and stayed at Edinburgh. While there he established a platonic relationship with Mrs Agnes Maclehose and they began a regular correspondence using the pseudonyms 'Clarinda' and 'Sylvander'. Burns wrote 'Ae fond kiss' after their final meeting and sent it to Maclehose on 27 December 1791 before she departed Edinburgh for Jamaica to be with her estranged husband.

Burns' original setting of three verses in eight lines was set to the tune of Rory Dalls' Port. The musical score was published in the collection of Scottish folks songs known as the Scots Musical Museum. The melody playable on the link here is not Rory Dalls Port, but perhaps is now more associated with the words than the original.

Ae Fond Kiss

Ae fond kiss, and then we sever;
Ae fareweel, and then forever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee,
Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.
Who shall say that Fortune grieves him,
While the star of hope she leaves him?
Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me;
Dark despair around benights me.

I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy,
Naething could resist my Nancy;
But to see her was to love her;
Love but her, and love forever.
Had we never lov'd sae kindly,
Had we never lov'd sae blindly,
Never met—or never parted—
We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Fare thee weel, thou first and fairest!
Fare thee weel, thou best and dearest!
Thine be ilka joy and treasure,
Peace. enjoyment, love, and pleasure!
Ae fond kiss, and then we sever;
Ae fareweel, alas, forever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee,
Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee!

Source: Wikipedia

  • Medium: Oil On Canvas
  • Framed Size (h w d): 100 x 90 x 7 cm
  • Created September 2022

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