Angels in the sky..
Many years ago I visited an exhibition of Children’s portraits in The Netherlands between 1500 and 1700, in the beautiful Frans Hals Museum in Haarlem. I have always loved looking at paintings from the ‘Golden Age’. Landscapes, people, house interiors, still lives , etc. I feel a strong connection there.
In the exhibition there were many family and children portraits, some of them so real I could easily see myself, or my child, in there. What really touched me was that in many paintings there were angels in the sky, hovering over the portraited family. I learned there that they represent the children that had died. Often it was more than one angel and it made me realize how different life was then, how much the parents had to deal with, but also, how much closer people were to the cycle of life and death then we are nowadays.
Now it is many years later and I have a strong interest in systemic work (family constellations). All of a sudden these angels in the sky came to my mind again. To me, it is a wonderful way of including all the souls who are part of the family system, for every one to see. Because only when we acknowledge every one’s rightful place in the system, we can truly be at peace with ourselves and with each other.
This portrait was painted by Johannes Mijtens in 1652 of the family of Master Willem van den Kerckhoven.