The Gallery of Everything presents the second in its series of Artist Focus

These texts aim to consider (re)discovered visual authors with significant bodies of work, and to position them within a context of makers, within and beyond mainstream culture.
The Light of the Soul (c 1930) 

(1878-1960, Austro-Hungarian Empire)

Olga Fröbe-Kapteyn was born in London 1881 to Dutch engineer and photographer, Albertus Kapteyn, and his wife, the philosophical anarchist Truus Muysken. 

In 1900 she moved to Zurich to major in History of Art at the School of Applied Arts, where she married Iwan Fröbe, a Croatian flutist and orchestra conductor. After her husband died in a plane crash, Fröbe-Kapteyn and her father travelled to the Mountain of Truth in the Swiss village of Ascona - an anarchist’s utopia, guided by laws of vegetarianism and nudism. From 1920 onwards, Ascona became her home.

It was here that Fröbe-Kapteyn created an informal centre called Eranos - a title suggested to her by historian of religions, Rudolf Otto. The Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Carl Jung, proposed she use Eranos as a meeting place between East and West, with symposia thematically poised to inspire interdisciplinary conversation. 

Fröbe-Kapteyn was devoted to finding images to illuminate each theosophical topic: Yoga and Meditation in East and West (1933), The Gestalt and Cult of the Great Mother (1938), The Hermetic Principle in Mythology, Gnosis, and Alchemy (1942), The Mysteries (1944), Spirit and Nature (1946) and Man and Time (1951). 

selection of works (c 1930) 
Her amassed collection of over 6,000 works illustrated Carl Jung’s writings and formed the Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (ARAS). This artistic quest for an arcane, sacred and spiritual symbology sparked her desire to create. Her visual output from this moment onwards comprised two distinct, yet interrelated projects: precisely delineated works on paper; and images from her archive. 

Fröbe-Kapteyn’s prints were produced between 1927 and 1934, following a series of meticulously drawn experiments in geometric abstraction. Although the edition count is not known, very few complete sets exist. The prints were directly influenced by English Theosophist Alice Bailey (1880-1949), who utilised art in psychotherapy as a tool to raise subconscious messages onto the canvas. 

The prints include diagrams of interlacing circles, which serve both as an impetus for meditation and as a visualisation of the conceptual structure of Eranos. The cryptic symbolic and mystic meanings are enhanced by the inclusion of gold-leaf and obscure figuration. With the golden ratio often guiding her hand, Fröbe-Kapteyn referred to these angular images as meditation drawings. In a similar vein to Jung, she became convinced that these symbols opened a window into the psyche.

Artworks by Olga Fröbe-Kapteyn are available for sale through The Gallery of Everything. Please contact the gallery by email here or for a selection of works click here.
 (photo by William McGuire, late 1950s)
The Medium's Medium at The Gallery of Everything
Photography: Benjamin Youd
The retreat from religion, particularly among the left-wing art world, is a driving factor behind this rise in spirituality.
Anna Brady, The Art Newspaper

Following the success of its installation at Frieze Masters, The Medium's Medium continues at The Gallery of Everything until Sunday 24th November. 

This wide-ranging exploration into spiritualist and mediumistic art practices, from the 19th century to the present day, features drawings and paintings by a diverse range of authors, now acknowledged as a significant influence on the development of 20th-century art. 

Artists include Marguerite Burnat-ProvinsMarian Spore BushFleury-Joseph Crepin, Olga Fröbe-KapteynMadge GillGertrude Honzatko-MedizNina KarasekAugustin LesageRaphaël LonnéHeinrich NussleinVictor SimonAustin Osman SpareJan Svankmajer, Eva SvankmajerovaShannon Taggart and more.

For available works, please click here.
For the Press Release, please click here
For The Art Newspaper article please click here.
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