Tag Archives: art exhibit

Art and Alchemy at Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf through Aug 10th, 2014

Art and Alchemy: The Mystery of Transformation is an exhibit at Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf through Aug 10th, 2014 that may be of interest [British Library]. The exhibit includes four ‘Ripley Scrolls’ from the British Library, which four are also available as Digitised Manuscripts and which you can read about on the British Library blog, if you can’t make it to see them in person.

British Library Ripley Scroll Add MS 5025 detail
Detail of a hermetic illustrating stages in the alchemical process and the revelation of alchemical wisdom, Add MS 5025, f. 4r.

“For the first time in Germany, an exhibition spanning all epochs and genres will be introducing the exciting link between art and alchemy in past and present times. 250 works from antiquity to the present, encompassing Baroque art, Surrealism, through to contemporary art from collections and museums in the USA, Great Britain, France, Mexico and Israel reveal the fascination which alchemy exerted for many visual artists. Artists featured in the exhibition, such as Joseph Beuys, Jan Brueghel the Elder, Lucas Cranach the Elder, Max Ernst, Hendrick Goltzius, Rebecca Horn, Anish Kapoor, Yves Klein, Sigmar Polke, Rembrandt van Rijn, Peter Paul Rubens and David Teniers the Younger invite visitors to explore the mystery of transformation.

Alchemy was invariably practised in secret, but was by no means a rare occurrence until well into the 18th century: Eminent personalities, including Paracelsus, Isaac Newton and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, were alchemists, too. It was not until the Age of the Enlightenment that alchemy was ousted and became intermingled with occultism, sorcery and superstition. In connection with 19th and early 20th-century psychoanalysis alchemy was brought to new life.

The exhibition was conceived by Museum Kunstpalast in cooperation with the research group ‘Art and Knowledge in Pre-Modern Europe’ at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin, as well as a group of experts at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia, which also provided many pieces on loan. A Wunderkammer of curious and exotic treasures from flora and fauna is offered for visitors to explore. In an extensive accompanying programme the subject of art and alchemy will be expanded upon by means of lectures, talks and guided tours. For the exhibition, a studio for children was set up, where the theme of ‘The Alchemy of Colour’ is explored by taking a close look at colours, along with their archetypical elements and production.”

Unheard-of Curiosities at Alexander Library, Rutgers through July 3rd, 2014

Unheard-of Curiosities: An Exhibition of Rare Books on the Occult and Esoteric Sciences is an exhibition at Alexander Library, Rutgers University, through July 3rd, 2014 and may be of interest, especially as it includes two of Hermetic Library figure J F C Fuller‘s paintings.

“The Rutgers University Libraries invite members of the Rutgers community and the general public to view “Unheard-of Curiosities”: An Exhibition of Rare Books on the Occult and Esoteric Sciences, the new exhibition in Alexander Library. The exhibition will showcase rare books from Special Collections and University Archives that illuminate the enduring popular interest in a diverse constellation of “occult” topics from the sixteenth century to the present day.

Many of the books in the exhibition were collected by the late Rutgers Professor of English, Clement W. Fairweather, Jr and predominantly focus on astrology and early astronomy from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries including works ranging from Arati Solensis Phaenomena et Prognostica (1569) to William Lilly’s Starry Messenger (1645) to the colorful Astrologer of the 19th Century and intriguing Raphael’s Witch!! Other titles featured explore topics such as prediction and prophecy, demons and the devil, witchcraft and magic, and the mysteries of ancient Egypt. The exhibition also highlights the exquisite illustrations of the tablet of Isis in the Mensa Isaica (1671), the whimsical The Magic Mirror of Nostradamus, and Book Four (1911), the work of the infamous Aleister Crowley.”

Apparently there was also a colloquium, on Jun 23rd, on “The Soldier and the Seer: J.F.C. Fuller, Aleister Crowley, and the British Occult Revival” with Henrik Bogdan, Christian Guidice, Gordan Djurdjevic, Richard Kaczynski and Robert Stein; and that probably would have been of great interest, as it relates to both J F C Fuller and Hermetic Library figure Aleister Crowley and their interrelationship, if I’d been able to post about it before it was too late to attend.

I:MAGE 2014 across London on Oct 21st – Nov 2nd, 2014

I:MAGE 2014 – Travelling with Unfamiliar Spirits, the second exhibition of esoteric art from Fulgur, will actually be a series of events in London and online from October 21st through November 2nd, 2014, with art, events, publications and stories.

Fulgur I:MAGE 2014

“The spirit world comes to life in this two-week-long celebration of esoteric art. The show’s theme coincides with the time of year: the beginning of the dark months. Popular culture calls it Hallowe’en but contemporary Witches and Druids across Europe and North America call it Samhain, Heathens Winter Nights, Greek reconstructionist movements Thesmophoria; Vodou practitioners celebrate Fete Ghede, followers of Santeria and indigenous religions in Latin America observe Día de los Muertos, while Welsh folklore advises staying away from cemeteries on Calan Gaeaf.

In most magical and esoteric traditions the end of October is a sacred time of year, a time for honouring the dead and communicating with the spirit world. It is a time to acknowledge the winter months and delve into the darker part of the year and of the self. The boundaries between the familiar and what is Other shatter. The veil is thin. The magic begins. For I:MAGE 2014, artists will explore what it means to communicate with spirits through art. They will give us a glimpse of a unifying theme across different esoteric practices and offer us the perfect opportunity to introduce you to a truly international show.” [via]

At the core is a selling exhibition hosted by Fulgur Esoterica that brings together an a number of international artists in the esoteric genre. That exhibition will take place at Cob Gallery in London and feature a number of artists.

“Agostino Arrivabene
Michael Bertiaux
Jesse Bransford
Anne Crossey
Arrington de Dionyso
Denis Forkas
Cristina Francov
Steffi Grant
Barry William Hale
Sara Hannant
Liz Insogna
Francesco Parisi
Max Razdow
Residue
Penny Slinger
Austin Osman Spare
Shannon Taggart”

Of particular interest, for those not nearby London, may be the artist blogs but especially Veil of Dreams: A Pilgrimage through Icelandic Magic with Jesse Bransford and Max Razdow, an interactive esoteric art project which you can start following now and in which you can participate.

Artists Jesse Bransford and Max Razdow set out to inhabit the same dream space for six months, blog about it and travel across the world to tell the story. Their starting point: Icelandic Magic.

For the next five months Jesse Bransford and Max Razdow will use Icelandic magical symbols as a reference point to enter the larger dream divination space of the Seiðr traditions and to synchronise their dreams. The results are published here on a daily basis. The project will culminate with a pilgrimage: the artists will travel to Iceland to visit sacred sites, perform a series of workings and find physical correspondences with their shared dream experiences and then to London, where they will exhibit the journal, the original artworks emerging from the dreams and be interviewed about their experience. Be a part of their story. [via]