Cave installation

April, 2014

This is an installation of chalk drawings I did at La Grotta, a gallery and performance art space in Brooklyn, NY. It consisted of several figural drawings with Runic elements, as well as a number of staves and Runic formulas. These were executed with powdered cowry shells.

The “cave” was created to accompany an invocation of the elemental force of Fire and the planetary force of Mars. There were more drawings and besides these, but some of the sigilized components were left unphotographed.

This work extends some of the themes of the Magic Circle installation, continuing to explore the tension between pre-literate Heathen techniques and the hyper-literate ceremonial magic which arose during the Christian era. Through the incorporation of the Rune cross of Johannes Bureus and the four runestaves associated with the Grail hallows in the extended Anglo-Saxon Fuþark, I hoped to confront and reclaim the legacy of my Christian ancestors.

The space was previously occupied by an awful, “posthuman” artist who didn’t clean up after himself. After performing the appropriate banishings, I incorporated the ruins of his soulless work into the southwest corner of the cave.

01 - South wall. Týr, before sacrifice of hand - by Leia von Hessen.

South wall of the cave. Týr is represented before the sacrifice of his hand.

02 - Southwest corner. Thunor hallows and holds the corpse of a dragon

Southwest corner. Thunor hallows and holds the corpse of the “posthuman” dragon.

03 - Southwest corner. Nine Thorn runes, one Æsir rune, hammer formations. - by Leia von Hessen.

Southwest corner. Nine Thorn runes, one Æsir rune, hammer formations.

“Winning-runes learn, | if thou longest to win,
And the runes on thy sword-hilt write;
Some on the furrow, | and some on the flat,
And twice shalt thou call on Tyr.”

04 - Northwest corner. Knot of the Brave - by Leia von Hessen.

Northwest corner. A full Fuþark and the Knot of the Brave.

05 - North wall. Óðinn, with horn design from gnostic watermark - by Leia von Hessen

North wall of the cave. Óðinn, represented in combination with a horn design based on an Albigensian watermark, sings the ALU formula into the horn.

06 - Northeast corner. Adalruna - by Leia von Hessen

Northeast corner. Adalruna.


The candles you see on the floor in the southwest corner were the only light in the room. The other photos are clearer, but actually being there was closer to this.