Aug 092010

First of all it is necessary for me to say a word about the term gothic as applied to French art, which imposed its rules on all the productions of the Middle Ages and whose influence extends from the twelfth to the fifteenth century.

Some have claimed—wrongly—that it came from the Goths, the ancient Germanic people. Others alleged that the word, suggesting something barbarous, was bestowed in derision on a form of art, whose originality and extreme peculiarity were shocking to the people of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Such is the opinion of the classical school, imbued with the decadent principles of the Renaissance.

But truth, preserved in the speech of the common people, has ensured the continued use of the expression gothic art, in spite of the efforts of the Academy to substitute the term ogival art. There was an obscure reason for this, which should have made our linguists ponder, since they are always on the look-out for the derivation of words.

How does it come about that so few compilers of dictionaries have lighted upon the right one? The simple fact is that the explanation must be sought in the cabalistic origin of the word and not in its literal root. Some discerning and less superficial authors, struck by the similarity between gothic (gothique) and goetic (goetique) have thought that there must be a close connection between gothic art and goetic art, i.e. magic.

For me, gothic art {art gothique) is simply a corruption of the word argotique (cant), which sounds exactly the same. This is in conformity with the phonetic law, which governs the traditional cabala in every language and does not pay any attention to spelling. The cathedral is a work of art goth (gothic art) or of argot, i.e, cant or slang.

Moreover, dictionaries define argot as ‘a language peculiar to all individuals who wish to communicate their thoughts without being understood by outsiders’. Thus it certainly is a spoken cabala. The argotiers, those who use this language, are the hermetic descendants of the argonauts, who manned the ship Argo. They spoke the langue argotique-—our langue verte (‘green language’ or slang)—while they were sailing towards the felicitious shores of Colchos to win the famous Golden Fleece.

People still say about a very intelligent, but rather sly, man: ‘he knows everything, he understands cant.’ All the Initiates expressed themselves in cant; the vagrants of the Court of Miracles—headed by the poet Villon—! as well as the Freemasons of the Middle Ages, ‘members of the lodge of God’, who built the argotique masterpieces, which we still admire today. Those constructional sailors (nautes) also knew the route to the Garden of the Hesperides….

Le Mystere des Cathedrales, Fulcanelli

Mar 162010

Ana De Costa

Ana De Costa yellow gold and tsavorite earrings

However brief a person’s encounter is in your life they leave a carbon imprint on your soul

Mystical Tarot is Ana De Costa’s first fine jewellery collection since she received high acclaim for ‘Cusp’, her St Martins graduation collection in 2005.  Her ‘Mystical Tarot’, collection was inspired by a rare and special deck of tarot cards, introducing a design concept given Ana by a dear friend, who has been an inspiration to many key creative minds in the fashion industry.

Ana’s latest designs form a narrative, following the story of the characters from the Art Noveau tarot deck translated directly to the jewellery. Hand-picked for their visual poignancy and spiritual meaning, these Art Noveau images were designed by Antonella Castelli, an illustrious 1920’s illustrator, from a luxurious and decadent period which continues to provide the main aesthetic for Ana’s designs. 

The collection includes twelve elegant pieces including pendants, dress earrings, a bracelet and cocktail rings, one which draws inspiration from the form of a papal design.  The intricate design taken from the artwork of the cards forms the detail, sculpted in 18-carat rose, white and yellow gold.

Ana De Costa necklace

Ana De Costa tsavorite and onyx pendant

The design of a crescent moon forms a stunning monocle pendant, set in white gold with black pave set diamonds to look like the night sky. A dramatic sweeping drop earring, designed to be worn with a simple stud, shows an example of Ana’s quirky approach to fine jewellery, and her innate sense of style.

A combination of stones including tsavorites, fire opals, rose quartz, rubies and fancy coloured diamonds, demonstrates Ana’s playful use of colour, and reflects her freethinking, bohemian spirit.  Her delicate fine jewellery collection, with gothic undertones, offers impactful statement pieces which feel just at home with a pair of jeans as a piece of couture. 

Ana De Costa has also produced a stunning ‘Rising Gems’ collection in conjunction with The World Land Trust and Liberty.