Production year: 2013


Format: Performative lecture and installation.


Exhibited at Oval Art Space, London - Kunstnerenes Hus, Oslo - Prosjektrom Normanns, Stavanger.


The lecture presents the life and work of Mary Anne Atwood, an English writer on Hermetic philosophy that lived at the turn of the 19th century.


Atwood researched and collaborated with her father Thomas South and at a very young age she independently wrote the book: “A Suggestive Inquiry into the Hermetic Mystery - With a dissertation on the more celebrated of the alchemical philosophers - Being an attempt towards the recovery of the ancient experiment of nature.”


The manuscript, though published in 1850, was suddenly withdrawn from distribution by Mr. South who, reading it after publication, believed the work was too complete and that Mary Anne had revealed crucial hermetic secrets. He therefore bought up the remaining stock and, with his daughter, burnt it all in the back garden.


Artist Sidsel Christensen presents a suggestive inquiry into possible avenues of making, action, collapse and inaction that presents itself from a contemporary reading of the material.


During the talk, the role of the author, the artist and the audience transforms in the space between language and substance, as the artist physically enters the images and ideas presented via the objects in the installation.