Skull Alchemy Ribcage Poster
Magnum Opus (Latin for The Great Work) originated during the 15th century by the Alchemist in Europe.
Alchemy is the successful transmutation of basically creating gold also known as the creation of the philosopher's stone.
It is also based on symbolic metaphors for spiritual transformation in the Hermetic tradition.
The Magnum Opus went through three critical phases and seven stages of operation:
The Black Phase (or Melanosis) is the first stage in alchemy. It phase begins with the operation of Calcination and lasts through the Putrefaction stage of Fermentation.
The White Phase (Leukosis) is the second stage of the Great Work and takes place during Distillation.
The Purple Phase (or Iosis) of the Great Work is the third and final stage of transformation. It is marked by the purpling or reddening of the material and occurs during the Coagulation operation.
The seven stages:
The first stage of the Fermentation operation; a digestion in which decomposing essences are reabsorbed.
The second operation in alchemical transformation is Dissolution.
The third operation in the alchemy of transformation.
Conjunction is the fourth operation in alchemical transformation. It is the coming together of the opposing archetypal forces of the Sun and Moon or the King and Queen.
The fifth operation in alchemical transformation is Fermentation.
Distillation is the sixth operation in alchemical transformation.
The seventh and last operation in alchemical transformation is Coagulation.
You will see many medieval Alchemical symbols throughout this poster:
The caduceus is the magical staff of Hermes, the Messenger of the Gods and revealer of alchemy. The staff is entwined by two serpents representing the solar and lunar forces.
A mercury symbol is on the left and the symbol for sulphur is on the right - Sulphur and Mercury Unite to form the Philosopher's Stone.
The crown symbolizes the successful completion of an alchemical operation or the achievement of a magisterium. It also signifies chemical royalty or the perfection of a metal.
Fire is one of the Four Elements of alchemy. Fire in the alchemical sense carries the archetypal properties of activity and transformation. It is associated with the operation of Calcination and represented by the metal lead.
Skeletons signify the process of Putrefaction, on all the levels in which it occurs.
The bat and bat wings played a role in alchemy as a symbol for ambiguities, such as the Hermaphrodite.
The two columns, Boaz and Jachin are symbolic of eternal stability. Jachim (or Jachin) represents the male polarity of the universe, light, motion, activity, the electron. Boaz represents the female polarity of the universe, darkness, passivity, receptivity, and silence.
The Rose is, in essence a symbol of completion, of consumate achievement and perfection, the mystic center, the heart, the garden of Eros, the paradise of Dante, the beloved, the emblem of Venus and so on.
And scattered throughout the sky, are many six-pointed stars, which are two triangles superimposed and interlaced so as to form a six-pointed star also known as the Seal of Solomon.
This poster is 17 inches wide by 22 inches high, generous black ink lushly printed on parchment stock.
PLEASE NOTE: This poster image was hand-drawn by Madame Talbot using General's Cedar Pointe #333-2HB pencils on Crescent 201.6 Hot Press Medium Weight illustration board at original poster size. An antique Koh-i-Noor rapidograph pen and Dr. P. H. Martin's Bombay Black India ink were used for final inking.
After completion, the image was hand-delivered to Ryan Gwinner Press in Portland, Oregon and printed on an offset printing press.
Absolutely no computers were used in the creation of this poster - from start to finish.
The copyright notice is on the website image only and not on the printed poster.