In the Greek mythology Gaia is the ancestral mother of all life, but the origin of this Goddess has to be found in prehistoric Greece. Although the word ‘Gaia’ is of uncertain origin, it is best translated as ‘Earth’.
Gaia was the mother of Uranus (personifying the sky) and Oceanus. In this painting the Goddess stands against a background of the ocean and sky.
The ‘Gaia’ of the artist, depicted with oil and cold wax on multi-panel wood, represents here a posed figure with her head proudly held high. With the eyelid going down, the gaze of the goddess seems to be absorbed in some thoughts, or it can be explained as a sort of concentration in bringing under control the natural elements that compose the background of the painting: the sky and the ocean.
André Romijn’s interpretation of Gaia, is of a tamed woman with delicate features that make Mother Earth a sensual and elegant figure. However, what immediately stands out is the big, purple cloth that is stylishly worn by Gaia. With this particular, carefully depicted in its details, the artist is able to confer a material perception that contrasts with the slender neck of the goddess. Such a strong stiffness that permits her to support the importance of her role.