Artist Talk: Art as Alchemical Portal to Nature
ART AS ALCHEMICAL PORTAL TO NATURE: Wilding’s “Nature Imagined” and “Nature Regenerated” in Re-connecting to Our Natural Roots.
Through art we embrace and even become nature; we connect to natural roots of being that make us remember that we are part of nature as well as part of culture. Susan Rowland’s talk uses depth psychology and alchemy to show what modern western life has forgotten, ignored or repressed, that the imagination is the most important natural resource, one that connects us to non-human nature as an essential part of our being. Indeed the ancient art of alchemy was a spiritual transformation of psyche into the nature of the cosmos. Alchemy was a dimension of magic, a rite of participation in nature, that has been lost as modernity withdrew, treating nature as without spirit. By contrast modern ideas of archetypes, synchronicity and complexity reveal what alchemists and artists knew, that art is a magical reciprocal dialogue with the nonhuman. Susan will be presenting these ideas from her book, The Ecocritical Psyche, showing art as portal to animated and inspirited nature.