As luck would have it, at some point in my life, I became a bit of a collector. I like most things, which is not terribly good as I then tend to buy all kinds. One area though that I am doing well, a sector that I have developed quite a taste for, is portraits. In the process I have also collected two artists, women, and who are now my friends.
Dafine Vitija, a young Kosovan woman artist, is just such a friend. She is currently pursuing her MA in Arts and is quite a sought-after artist, even beyond Kosovo. Women are her subject, from ones in traditional Albanian dress to geishas.
The first time I saw her paintings I was struck by the composition and the subject matter. It was a triptych – three women in three traditional Albanian dress, with the most amazing features, striking and alien-like. It took some time until I got hold of the triptych, which is one of my favourite pieces of art.
Dafine paints the “face” of Hyjnesha ne Fron (the Goddess on a Throne) celebrating the cult of the great mother idol. Hyjnesha ne Fron is a terracotta artefact unearthed in Prishtina in 1956 and dated four millennia before Christ. Nevertheless, that is a story for another time.