"The union of the solar and lunar, the coniunctio, which was the focus of Jung’s studies, remains shrouded in mystery. Perhaps we have not yet achieved the necessary consciousness to deal with such realms."
— Nathan Schwartz-Salant

Unryu metal paper, hand-cut, and watercolour on paper, 76x56 cm.

Date14 March 2016
Category, ,

This piece started out as another depiction of a cosmological system but ended up being alchemical. Sun and Moon here are not the physical or even astrological objects, but age-old symbols of the opposites: day and night, masculine and feminine, outer and inner, yang and yin… Coniunctio oppositorum is the alchemical term describing the union of these opposites, of which is born an integrated wholeness no longer split by duality. In my piece this is suggested by the vesica piscis (the almond shape where the circles intersect), which I associate with the Universal Womb: a gateway through which any potentiality can enter into manifestation.

The cut paper is assembled so that each ring is on a separate plane slightly inclined relatively to the background: furthest from it where it goes over the other, nearly touching it where it goes under. I wasn’t sure what colour to make the dots, until the last minute when I realized they must be reversed (gold for the Moon and silver for the Sun), because all things contain the seed of their opposite.


A penny for your thoughts...