‘The pseudoscientific predecessor of chemistry that sought a method of transmuting base metals into gold, and an elixir to prolong life indefinitely.’ (dd. Collins concise English dictionary)
Although routed in far distant antiquity, in the Medieval period many people believed that the study of Alchemy would lead them to discover the process by which base metals could be turned into gold.
Alchemists also searched for the fabled Elixir of Life, a magical medicine that conferred eternal life on the imbiber. The medieval alchemists, although largely unsuccessful in their quest nevertheless began the tradition of rigorous experimentation and record keeping that led to the modern disciplines of science and medicine.
Although Alchemy seems to us so much mumbo jumbo, the Welsh Alchemist and astrologer John Dee, (subject of a recent Opera by Blurs Damon Alburn and a novel by Peter Ackroyd) who lived and died in London (1527-1609) was paid a pension by Queen Elizabeth 1.
Alchemy is magic and science mixed. Creativity harnessed to wild imagination.
“Flowers grow out of rotting compost, rainbows grow out of gloom and thunder. We need to believe in something” Marcia Lema(introduction to The Mendwing Bird. Cameron Fox and Meredith Swan. Kind Red Spirit Publications. 2002)
Alchemy is a collaborative project that translate the relationship between the moon, the sun and the light into the textile world.
Dress/ Prints by Ana Lopes
Shoes / Bag by Marcelina Paulinska
Sleeve by Emma Surtees
Photoshoot by Shannon Tao