Even the three Graces can be made to look sinister in the right light …
The role of the three witches in Shakepeare’s Macbeth is ambiguous – they are never actually referred to as witches in the play. One interpretation is that they were inspired by the Fates – the Moirai of Greek mythology – who spin, measure and cut the thread of human lives. They control Macbeth’s actions by placing the thought of being king in Macbeth’s mind, so setting him on a path to his own destruction.
The pose comes from Rafael’s depiction of the Three Graces – the ‘Siena’ pose.
Varied edition: 10 prints