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Spot the difference

21 Nov, 2016

“The cavernous setting of the disorderly interior may well refer to the fact that alchemists were often accused of losing all their material belongings in their futile search of the philosopher’s stone”.

https://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/paintings/adriaen-van-ostade-an-alchemist

I can so definitely relate to that quote in so many ways, I can’t even begin to tell you. In fact, it pretty much sums up life as I know it!

This is a painting called The Alchemist by Adriaen van Ostade in 1661. It was later bought by the National Gallery, London. Close up you can see the date inscribed on the shovel by the fireplace, apparently. The paper by the stool shows writing from the treatise De Re Metallica, by Agricola 1556, a prominent book of the time cataloguing the smelting of metals. It says, “oleum et operam perdis”, - oil and work is wasted.

This is a picture of my finca in Spain before renovation work commenced. How similar they are! I have always thought of myself as a bit of an alchemist with the making of lotions and potions out of the herbs that I grow. I have never really got around to selling them, though I did do a local fiesta with some friends recently, near to the finca at a workers co-operative. And they are a feature on the Red Tent Retreat as we can wander about and pick the herbs that grow wild and from my garden nd make things from them. Such a fantastic way to spend a day. One of the best parts is naming the products. I really fancy getting into hair solid hair products next, so that you can take them on planes. Ryan Hair solid shampoo bar anyone? 

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