Tag Archives: exhibition

Works by William Blake at Tate Britain through Jan 18, 2014

Works by William Blake is a new exhibition that just opened today at the Tate Britain in London. The exhibition runs through January 18, 2014.

William Blake Elohim Creating Adam at Tate Britain
William Blake’s Elohim Creating Adam (c. 1805) at Tate Britain

“This exhibition of Blake’s paintings and drawings aims to show his work at its highest level in all the periods of its development and in each of the various processes employed by him.

The collection includes considerable loans from Mr. Graham Robertson and the Linnell Trustees. The first of these, largely composed of works acquired from the Butts collection, principally represents the period of Blake’s middle life, from about 1795–1810, and the second covers the final stage from 1818 to his death. In addition to these important central features, the series is completed by a number of works from other sources.”

Occult figures

There’s even more press for the Windows to the Sacred: An Exploration of the Esoteric art exhibition touring in Australia, which is at the S H Ervin Gallery through September 29th, 2013, and which may be of interest. John MacDonald writes a bit about his impressions of the exhibition and of how these “[a]rtists cast a wicked spell as popular culture embraces all things supernatural, mystical and demonic” over at “Occult figures“.

“‘Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law,’ was the personal motto of Aleister Crowley (1875-1947), once known to the headline writers as ‘the Great Beast’ and ‘the Wickedest Man Alive’. It was a philosophy that would endear him to the counterculture of the 1960s and make him a hero for rock stars such as Jimmy Page and Jim Morrison. Perhaps the sealer for Crowley’s second coming was his inclusion on the album cover for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967), at John Lennon’s insistence.

A famous sorcerer such as Crowley has an obvious appeal for a popular culture saturated in stories of witches and vampires, but he was no Harry Potter. Selfish, brutal, addicted to drugs and sexual perversion, Crowley was a terrifying but hugely charismatic individual. Those who fell under his spell often found themselves ruined for life. Today, Crowley probably has more disciples than ever before, but his image has been cleaned up for public consumption. The Great Beast has been transformed into the Great Libertarian.

Like Crowley himself, the study of the occult has become almost respectable, although the price is a high degree of Disneyfication. One of the revelations of Windows to the Sacred at the S.H. Ervin Gallery is the extent to which contemporary occultists have adopted the trappings of popular culture.

It is a sign of the times that such a show could be held at the S. H. Ervin. Not long ago it would have been unthinkable that a gallery operated by the National Trust would host an exhibition of ‘esoteric art’, featuring work by figures such as Crowley, Rosaleen Norton — the so-called ‘witch of Kings Cross’ — and Austin Osman Spare, a notorious British artist devoted to the supernatural.

This doesn’t mean the S. H. Ervin has become a haven for mystics and Satanists. It would be more accurate to say that nowadays those mystics and Satanists are about as controversial as the Australian Watercolour Institute. If the pictures by celebrated figures such as Crowley and Spare have a hermetic feeling, the works of contemporary esoteric artists such as Barry William Hale and Kim Nelson seem to be pitched at a mainstream audience, rather than an elite group of initiates.” [via]

Witches and Wicked Bodies at Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art open through Nov 3rd

I previously mentioned Witches and Wicked Bodies, a show at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, in Edinburgh, Scotland.

William Blake's The Whore of Babylon featured at Witches and Wicked Bodies exhibition
William Blake, The Whore of Babylon, (1809)

Since that was a while ago, and the show is now open, I thought I’d mention it again. This will run through Nov 3rd, 2013. See also Witches: from hideous hags to sexy sirens — in pictures for a preview. Further, there’s a more recent article at From Macbeth to the Wizard of Oz: New exhibition explores the erotic side of witchcraft; Images of witches have always had a sexual aspect, as a new show in Edinburgh vividly demonstrates [HT Judika Illes].

Witches and Wicked Bodies at Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art from July 27th

Witches and Wicked Bodies is a show at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, in Edinburgh, Scotland, that will run from Jul 27th through Nov 3rd, 2013. See also Witches: from hideous hags to sexy sirens — in pictures for a preview.

William Blake's The Whore of Babylon featured at Witches and Wicked Bodies exhibition
William Blake, The Whore of Babylon, (1809)

“Delve into the world of Witches and Wicked Bodies in this major new exhibition coming in summer 2013.

Discover how witches and witchcraft have been depicted by artists over the past 500 years, including works by Albrecht Dürer, Francisco de Goya and William Blake, plus pieces by 20th century artists such as Paula Rego and Kiki Smith.

Through 16th and 17th century prints and drawings, learn how the advent of the printing press allowed artists and writers to share ideas, myths and fears about witches from country to country.

Including major works on loan from the British Museum, the National Gallery (London), Tate, the Victoria & Albert Museum, as well as works from the Galleries’ own collections, Witches and Wicked Bodies will be an investigation of extremes, exploring the highly exaggerated ways in which witches have been represented, from hideous hags to beautiful seductresses.

Supported by the Patrons of the National Galleries of Scotland.” [via]

“The Witches and Wicked Bodies exhibition coming soon to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art explores how myth, legend and folk belief have shaped the depiction of witches over the past 500 years. Packed with sensuality and magic, these works show why witchcraft has cast a spell on artists for so long” [via]

For the Martian Chronicles exhibit and The Bartzabel Working performance

For the Martian Chronicles is an exhibit at L & M Arts in their West Gallery space located in Los Angeles. This overall exhibit includes works by a number of artists, such as Kenneth Anger, Brian Butler and Cameron Parsons.

“L&M Arts is proud to present For the Martian Chronicles, an exhibition that pays homage to the late writer Ray Bradbury (1920-2012), who in the 1940’s lived in a home located on the current L&M Arts property.”

“Curated by Yael Lipschutz in honor of Bradbury and his journey into the red unknown, the exhibition will include the original manuscript of The Martian Chronicles …” [via]

The exhibition itself will feature a nightly film loop that includes films from Kenneth Anger’s Invocation of My Demon Brother, Brian Butler’s Night of Pan.


Tonight, on Tue, Dec 4th from 8:30p–11:30p, there will be a special performance of The Bartzabel Working by Brian Butler, actor James Franco and others.

“Based on a ceremonial evocation of the spirit of Mars, first written and performed in London in 1910 by the famed British occultist Aleister Crowley, the ritual later became part of Los Angeles history in 1946 when Jet Propulsion Laboratory rocket scientist and Crowley protégé Jack Parsons conducted his own version of this rite, with the intention of placing a martial curse on a pre-scientology L. Ron Hubbard.

For his reinterpretation of this historical performance, Butler will conjure Bartzabel, the spirit of Mars, evoking the site that was once home to the late sci-fi author Ray Bradbury and currently comprises L&M Arts. The ritual will have Butler as Chief Magus, leading a cast drawn from his upcoming feature film King Death and featuring Henry Hopper as Assistant Magus, Noot Seear as Magus Adjuvant, and James Franco as Material Basis, the vessel though which the spirit of Mars manifests.

The performance will take place on Tuesday, December 4th at 8:30pm, followed by a reception with tunes courtesy of DJ artist Eddie Ruscha and a choreographed performance by artist Nana Ghana and Future Eyes.” [via, also]

The Light Grey Tarot

I mentioned the Tarot, Mystics and the Occult Exhibition previously. I just noticed an announcement that pre-orders for an actual tarot deck are now available. You may be interested in checking that out.

“We’re printing a limited quantity run of The Light Grey Tarot to accompany our Tarot, Mystics and the Occult Exhibition (Coming to Light Grey Art Lab October 19).

Each 78-card boxed set of the Light Grey Tarot comes with a 32 page guidebook that walks through all of the meanings, symbolism and details of each card, plus instructions on how to read several classic Tarot spreads. The cards are approximately 2.75 inches x 4.75 inches (nice and tall!)” [via]

Tarot, Mystics and the Occult Exhibition: Tarot Cards

You may be interested in Light Grey Art Lab‘s Tarot, Mystics and the Occult project and exhibition. The exhibition runs Oct 19th through Nov 9th, 2012, at Light Grey Art Lab in Minneapolis, MN. In particular, you may be interested in the collaborative showcase of tarot card inspired art by 78 artists.

“As you may have guessed, we’re going all out for this show. We’re looking to really fill the gallery with mystical, magical and incredible pieces -and- the space will be filled with fate-tempting booths with live tarot readings and other fortune-telling and mystical experiences! For this project: Each artist selected for the Tarot exhibition will be exhibiting an incredible large-scale print of their work and we’ll also be publishing a limited quantity of fully illustrated Tarot Decks containing the work of all 78 artists, just for this occasion!”

The Nightmare Paintings

The Nightmare Paintings: Aleister Crowley is an exhibition of Aleister Crowley works in Australia. Currently there doesn’t appear to be much information available about the exhibition, but you may be interested in the limited edition exhibition catalogue, of which only 666 will be made and is scheduled for November 2012.

“Limited edition exhibition catalogue with full colour reproductions to commemorate the first major exhibition of Aleister Crowley in Australia.

Essays by Marco Pasi, Giuseppe Di Liberti, Stephen J King, William Breeze, Tobias Churton and Robert Buratti.” [via]

Europe and the Spirit World or the Fascination with the Occult, 1750-1950

If you’re in Europe, anywhere near Strasbourg, you may want to rush out to see Europe and the Spirit World or the Fascination with the Occult, 1750-1950 which runs only through Dec 2nd through Dec 12, 2012.

“‘Europe and the Spirit World or the Fascination with the Occult, 1750-1950’ is a cross-disciplinary exhibition exploring the influence of the occult on artists, thinkers, writers and scholars throughout Europe, at decisive moments in the history of the modern world. The exhibition is organized into three sections:

– The creative arts: painting, drawing, sculpture, print-making and photography, the literature of the irrational and unexplained.

– The esoteric tradition revisited, with an extensive chronological survey encompassing the movement’s foundational texts and print iconography.

– The relationship between occult phenomena and the scientific world, through key scholarly figures and thinkers, and an examination of their experiments and scientific instruments.

With some 500 works of art, 150 scientific artefacts, 150 books and 100 documents from a host of European countries, Europe and the Spirit World will be presented in a dedicated 2500-m2 space at the the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Strasbourg.”

Grand Guignol II: HÄXAN – Satan + The Women who love Him

There’s a project you might be interested in called “Grand Guignol II: HÄXAN – Satan + The Women who love Him” [also] which is for an art catalogue of symbolist and macabre art from and inspired by the Grand Guignol featuring “artworks of WITCHES and SATAN from 1870-2011.”

This is a project of Century Guild, founded by Thomas Negovan. So, if you’re in the Chicago, IL area, you could actually sign up to check out this invitation-only exhibition, schedule for Oct 22, 2011.