Inner Alchemy I. Acrylic, ink and grout on canvas - 100 x 100 cm - Sold

‘In the body of man there is hidden a certain substance of heavenly nature known to very few - the Alchemist Gerhard Dorn.
The western Alchemists as well as the Eastern Alchemists ascribed an important role to colors in their Great Work. For the western alchemists, there were tree or four colors representing the process: black, white, yellow and red. For the Chinese alchemists, the colors were associated with seasons, elements and directions, meant to intuitively show the way for the student.
Alchemy is described literally as the process of turning base metals such as copper into gold, but it has a symbolical and psychological meaning too: it is the process of the inner work, transforming your inner chaos of oppositions, unfulfilled desires, moods, through self reflection and self knowledge, and using the wisdom to consciously live your soul and destiny.
My work is intended to be a reflection of the viewer’s inner process, and inner alchemy.
Orange almost reaches the empire of gold. Orange takes a place between the color red connected to the earthly realm, active and dynamic, and yellow the color of eternity, the centers of heavens, the sun. It is the tantric oneness of oppositions, and represents the sacral chakra. The color of Aurora and Dawn, who form the stairs between night and day.
Stairs for a long time form a representation of ascending and climbing through hard transitions. Babylonian, Mayan and Roman architecture used stairs to connect heaven and earth, and in Egypt stairs formed a passage between life and death.
In old Rome, Mithraic priests led students onto the stairs of Seven Planets, where each step was cast in a different metal, connected to one of the seven visible planets. The golden step on top was connected to the sun, and by ascending to this stage the initiate went through solificatio, the sublimation of the soul back to Source. However in texts from the middle ages with descriptions of the Alchemist standing in front of stairs, the variations of climbing the stairs varied, and didn’t seem to matter, indicating that ups and downs were all part of the process. The alchemists’s axiom “as above, so below” is a reference to the harmony between mental and material, blue and red, and eventually leads to a place where there are no oppositions, finding oneness in all.

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© 2023 Eliza de Geus