Dean Melbourne post

On 2oth June we had the opportunity to deliver a talk/workshop at the Reading Room of the  Wellcome Collection’s   as part of their Open platform series. It was a great opportunity to share our research learning to date.

Getting to spend time in amongst the resources of the Reading Room has been really inspiring all the way through our research phase. The Alchemy section being linked with Jung’s work and in particular his Red Book have proved invaluable .

Open Platform is about introducing members of the public to the collection in new ways. Meaning that more diverse voices are heard and the range of ways the collection influences projects shared.

Our session took the form of information sharing and using images from the collection as reference and then a chance for “creative play” with some of the alchemical symbols.

Delivering a session like this was really useful in helping us consolidate our learning up to this point. In the one hour session we were able to give an over view of Jung’s notion of Alchemy as analogues to the development of the human psyche. We shared a key overview of the colour stages of the Alchemical process and the explored the exciting world of symbols and meaning.

Around 30 people attended the session. These included other artist and researchers and members of the public passing through the collection.

In the exercise we asked participants to arrange symbols into their own pattern to describe a particular challenge they faced and then to resolve that image by editing or adjusting the diagram. In effect creating their own Alchemical instructions for resolution of difficulty.


Below are some of the feeback comments.

“The content of the talk was fascinating. Hands on presentation of images, excellent activity engaging and thought provoking within a well constructed hour.”

“Great information and engaging presenters”

“The talk was very interesting, the level of research was compelling and left me wanting to know more.”

” dynamic presentation”

“Enjoyable, playful session that sits well within Wellcome”

“A new facet of Jungian Alchemy”