I will not greyish forms; greyish forms are the mind-killer.
February 5, 2019 6:08 PM   Subscribe

From the Public Domain Review: Victorian Occultism and the Art of Synesthesia, a look at the intersection of early 20th century occult theory, theosophical tomfoolery, and aesthetic abstraction in Besant and Leadbetter's Thought-Forms.
posted by cortex (6 comments total) 34 users marked this as a favorite
Don't skip the comments.
posted by RoseyD at 10:19 PM on February 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Abstract art was heavily influenced by occultic mysticism. Another example is the wonderful Hilma af Klint, who was making abstract paintings before anyone else, inspired by her theosophical beliefs.
posted by Kattullus at 12:33 AM on February 6, 2019 [3 favorites]

This is relevant to my interests!
posted by Synesthesia at 7:42 AM on February 6, 2019 [2 favorites]

The source materials referenced are intriguing, and I’ll look into them further. My personal experience with synesthesia has been ... very different ... from the visual depictions here. My basic concept of my neurological differences is based on my (admittedly limited) concept of neurology. Even when I was four years old, the first time I actively remember experiencing touch as color, I thought “Ooo that’s neat” rather than “Ooo I’m magic.” This from a point in my life in which I thoroughly believed in magic. However, I was an adult before I realized not everyone experienced things this way. Which may explain my lack of imagination on the subject.

It’s never occurred to me that others might have interpreted these experiences as spiritual visions. Looking forward to delving into the cited works.
posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 7:46 AM on February 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

Possibly related and of interest: Ithell Colquhoun's reduction of the tarot deck to pure colour abstractions (recently published as a beautiful book by Fulgur).
posted by remembrancer at 12:19 PM on February 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

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