Petra Horni-Dereani’s Crowning of a Child
Today, I stumbled across a wonderful website devoted to birth art. Constructed by Amy Swagman, a mother, artist and active member in her own birth community in Denver, Colorado, the website (The Mandala Journey) compiles and showcases contemporary works by many different artists. Devoted to different themes of birth, some of these are powerful images that help women to visualize the birth of their own children.
In this image, Petra Horni-Dereani uses warm, earthy colors of gold, yellow, red, brown and white to depict the crowing of a child. The birthing mother reclines against her partner, who provides a sturdy support for her as she gently pushes her baby out. A midwife, who rests like a firm anchor at the bottom center of the artwork, stretches her two hands up to hold the head of the baby as it exits the mother’s body. Details of the image, such as the raised positioning of the woman’s legs, and the pulling motion of the woman’s hand upon her knee, lend strength and movement to the image as a whole. Yet the composition of the birth moment depicted is one of calmness, showing the viewer how a child’s crowning may occur in tranquility.
Petra Horni-Dereani is an Austrian artist who is also a doula and mother of seven children.