Monday, February 24, 2020

Lundi Gras

Today is Lundi Gras.

It leads to tomorrow, which is Mardi Gras.  On the day before Mardi Gras which hearkens back to 1874, Rex, the King of Carnival, arrives by boat at the riverfront.  The King and his royal court travel from the river to City Hall where the mayor and various city officials present Rex with the keys to the city and grant him temporary control and rule of the city beginning at sunrise on Mardi Gras morning.

Bleubeard and I will be traveling virtually to New Orleans to don our masks and share in the Mardi Gras festivities.  We'll also show that Mardi Gras is loved by encasing masks inside an open Heart, which is also my theme this month at Art Journal JourneyLet's also visit the colors of Lundi Gras, because green gives us an excellent opportunity to once again join Try it on Tuesday. Purple Represents Justice. Green Represents Faith. Gold Represents Power.  Legend has it that Rex, King of the carnival, selected the official Mardi Gras colors, although the reason behind this decision appear to be vague.

Let's start this journey.

Lundi Gras (also known as Shrove Monday) traditions are mostly observed in the meals that are prepared. Since Lent is a season when no meat can be eaten, Shrove Monday appears to be a day to eat all the meat so it doesn't spoil during the 40 days of Lent.

In England, the British name is Collop Monday, in which the traditional dishes of the day are slices of leftover meat with eggs. In other countries the tradition for Shrove Monday is the Carnival Parade, the most famous in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Different samba schools compete with luxurious costumes and giant floats decorated along one of the avenues, called the Sambódromo, to be the winner of the festival.

In Germany there are also parades, and the festival is called Rozenmontag (a transliteration which means “running Monday”) , when people wear costumes and make fun of politics and public figures.  According to various sources on the internet, it is the highlight of the German “Karneval” procession.

In Greece the day is called Kathari Deftera, also known as Green Monday, and according to various internet sites, the tradition there is to fly kites. Like Greece, most of Mediterranean Catholic countries celebrate Shrove Monday during Carnival with parades and parties.

However, in New Orleans, Shrove Monday is called Lundi Gras

and the events including Carnival, are specific to New Orleans and the surrounding area.

The Monday before Ash Wednesday is known as Shrove Monday.  The three days before Ash Wednesday are also known as "Shrovetide," starting with Quinquagesima Sunday and ending on Shrove Tuesday, known more popularly as Mardi Gras. 

Quinquagesima means the 50th day before Easter, or specifically the last Sunday before Ash Wednesday which marks the beginning of Lent.

This leads to Mardi Gras, the biggest party of the year in New Orleans and around the Catholic Christian world.

The period from the last Sunday before Lent through Fat Tuesday is known collectively as Shrovetide. 

Shrovetide is also known as Carnivale.  It means "goodbye to meat" (from carne, meat, and vale, farewell).

According to several sites on the internet, Mardi Gras is also known as pancake day in Great Britain.

Fat Tuesday is more commonly known as Mardi Gras, which is simply Fat Tuesday in French.

In New Orleans, those attending Mardi Gras parties often wear masks that are donned with feathers.  Those attending Mardi Gras parades vie for the beads that are thrown from the floats.

I began by separating this page into two sides.  Although I used the same background colors, I made the lines vertical on one side and horizontal on the other.  The background is a combination of water soluble crayons and water color pencils.  

For the Lundi Gras side, I computer generated the words and colored them using water color pencils.  The hearts were made using acrylic craft paint.  The green feather was originally light pink, and I dyed it using one of my handmade shimmering mists.

For the Mardi Gras side, I also computer generated the words and colored them using water color pencils.  I used one of my handmade shimmering mists to make the heart, which I cut after I painted the entire page.  I found a Mardi Gras image in my travel brochures, cut it to size and added it to the large heart.

Bleubeard and I are grateful you stopped by today. Your visit means the world to us.  We hope to also see you at Art Journal Journey and Try it on Tuesday

27 thoughtful remarks:

Valerie-Jael said...

Düsseldorf is one of the BIG carnival centres in Germany, but I am not a fan of it. There is way to much drink involved, and for many it is an opportunity to get stone drunk and behave badly. The processions from yesterday all had to be cancelled because of the storm, so I don't know if the Rosenmontag parade will take place today. Your page is beautiful. Valerie

Iris Flavia said...

Oh, one day I´d like to visit New Orleans, too!
They party when someone is born or leaves the earth, right. Much better than we do (though! On Mum´s funeral, with all the siblings left we had some laughs!).

Here you can have all the meat on carnival (and now I wonder why) and on Mondays women cut men´s ties (I wonder about that, also).
Oh, Rio must be wonderful, too!

Actually (oh, I´m a pea counter, as we say, it´s "Rosenmontag", from the rose. Or from rising? Don´t make me find out!)
Here (Northern Germany) it´s all on Sunday. Monday.... back to work!

Now I am wondering how feathers were on sale here (and I bought some, too).

Thank you for the explanations, and the beautiful work, too!
Over here, some 200 miles from Valerie, the parade took place, no such storm.

aussie aNNie said...

Beautiful, informative and oh so colourful.x

froebelsternchen said...

Absolutely beautiful Elizabeth!

Elkes Lebensglück said...

Today's Monday Monday parade and you will find plenty in Düsseldorf or Mainz and Köln.
Interesting what you write because of the weather a lot was canceled yesterday. I was there before and it was wonderful to laugh with other people.
Beautiful your journal, well thought out!!!
greetings elke

Mae Travels said...

Your overview of pre-Lent customs is really enlightening. Every year there are some photos of some of the more spectacular customs in the news, but I like your more thorough treatment -- wish you had photos of the costumes and the dishes of food.

best... mae at

Mae Travels said...

Your overview of pre-Lent customs is really enlightening. Every year there are some photos of some of the more spectacular customs in the news, but I like your more thorough treatment -- wish you had photos of the costumes and the dishes of food.

best... mae at

CJ Kennedy said...

Clever how you combined themes for your pages. Interesting facts about the days leading up to Ash Wednesday. I've never been to New Orleans and didn't know about Rex, King of Carnival or the etymology of carnival.

My name is Erika. said...

Do you wish people happy lundi gras? Well i am wishing you that with cool page. Love the green for TIOT. And I also learned a lot. I didn’t know all that since in New England it isn’t really anything at all. Too many Puritans in the past I guess. Love the page and happy new week. Hugs Erika

Sami said...

Beautiful and colourful Carnival pages Elizabeth.
They don't celebrate Carnival here strangely enough.
In my youth I spent a Carnival in Rio when I visited family I have there. I remember it involved a lot of dancing, an a lot of half naked men and women (not me!!) but it was quite a fun experience.

Sandra said...

So festive! Let's party! I always enjoy the history lessons and learn something I didn't know.

Meggymay said...

Fantastic carnival pages which have really cheered me up as I saw them today. Lots of interesting facts and information as well. Looking through my window it is dull and snowing, you brought the sunshine into my room.
Its another wonderful inspiring page for your theme at Art journal Journey and Try it on Tuesdays.
Yvonne xx said...

Very informative ~ I never heard of Shrove Monday ~ or Lundi Gras for that matter so thanks for the lesson & colorful inspiration pages!

Divers and Sundry said...

I celebrate Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras/Fat Tuesday but have never heard of including the Monday in the mix. Googling it, it looks like a fairly recent New Orleans thing. It must be such fun to live in New Orleans!

DVArtist said...

Ohhh a truly beautiful card. Have a great time in N.O.

kathyinozarks said...

I enjoyed this post Elizabeth-as I didn't know much of anything about the holidays. I have never been to New Orleans-I don't like crowds so I don't think I would want to be there during this time. Great page-

da tabbies o trout towne said...

Elizabeth !!! this piece is awesome !!! and thanx for sharing some history of Mardi Gras; I learned some things today.. ☺☺♥♥

Birgit said...

Love your page which has so much thought berought into it. Love the colours and liked learning about the meaning and this Monday and what it means. I like the feathers and beads are always nice but i would never lift my top for them. I would get the beads pelted at me not thrown to me:) My mom remembers Mardi Gras but she called it Fasching.

pearshapedcrafting said...

A beautiful page and once again Elizabeth you are a mine of information! I don't think I'll be paying any mind to Collop Monday!! Hugs, Chrisx

pinky said...

Wow what a splash of colour, I love this!!

Jeanie said...

You know, if they didn't have paczkis here, I don't think we in the north would even know it was Mardi Gras. The packis are a big deal (although I don't really eat them). The rest of the traditions? Nope. But I love the colors and they work well on your piece!

RO said...

More great info that I didn't know and a fabulous piece of artwork! Hugs, RO

craftytrog said...

A fabulous page, and virtual visit to Mardi Gras! xx

Rosie said...

A beautiful page

Thank you for joining us at TRY IT ON TUESDAY

Cindy McMath said...

Beautiful and colourful carnival pages! I love the colours you’ve used - they go so well with the masks and the theme.

nwilliams6 said...

I love New Orleans and you have captured the fun of it here. I really love how you recolored one of the feathers - what a great thing to do. Wonderful creation!

Cath Wilson said...

Ooh, I've never heard of Shrove Monday...yet Wikipedia says it's an English Liturgical term.
Mardi Gras, on the other hand, I have, of course, heard of, lol, usually in reference to masks. I didn't know it was also called Lundi Gras, though...maybe because of the French in the Caribbean? Your blog posts are so often educational, Elisabeth. It's good to learn ;-)

Lovely colour combo here and you can't have Mardi Gras without feathers! Aren't those masks amazing?
Cath x