In Greek mythology, Danaë was a princess, the daughter of King Acrisius of Argos and Eurydice. When the oracle confronted Acrisius with the prophecy that even if he were to hide in farthest reaches of the Earth he would die at the hands of his own grandson, the son of Danaë, he decided to locked her in a subterranean bronze chamber under the watchful eye of his guards.
Having fallen in love with the young princess, Zeus turned into a golden rain that streamed into the chamber through a skylight and penetrated Danaë’s womb. From this union Perseus was born. Fearing the prophecy, Acrisius ordered the mother and child to be put in a wooden chest and thrown into the sea. The water would kill them.
Zeus intervened, asking Poseidon, god of the sea, to calm the waters. Danaë and Perseus survived Acrisius’ plan and eventually reached the island of Seriphos, where they were taken in by Dictys. Years later, after defeating the terrifying Medusa, whose gaze petrified all that dared confront her, Perseus mortally wounded his grandfather Acrisius with a javelin at the athletic games of Larissa, thus fulfilling the oracle’s prophecy.
In mythology, destiny gains a geometrical tone; it draws wide diameter circumferences to always complete what had been predestined. To give life and to inflict the mortal wound are sometimes the same gesture, like Perseus birth is also already Acrisius’ death. Water is the element in which the beginning and the end are forever undistinguishable, everything becomes part of the same heavy and penetrating mass that overcomes all, as obstinate as a god’s passion.
Falling to the earth or ascending to the sky, water is always and already, in its tireless verticality, all that causes birth. It is the exhortation to fertility in which men ask the gods to become part of the cycle. It is the earth asking to always create more, as if avoiding the end of everything whose birth it witnessed – a concavity that contains and an opening that gives way.