Mixing the mystical and the artistic, spirituality and style, Chaos Magic are one of the most singular art collectives in Nottingham. Our Marta Tavares stops by their spot at BACKLIT Gallery to find out more…
Magic, the moon, stars, rituals, manifestation, belief and life. There is no reality without chaos present, and Chaos Magic embraces all its beauty and darkness in their deepest forms.
The name ‘Chaos Magic’ comes from the belief system of changing reality through ritual practice and that a better, purer and fairer world can be manifested through cooperation and inclusivity. At Chaos Magic, you are invited as a person, and treasured as a human being, to take part in their art journey. From performances, workshops, gardening, drawing, painting, video, poetry, to stars and the moon rituals, the project grows within the heart of Nottingham.
But the question that arises within chaos and magic and art is, what gives them such a special connection?
The project started in 2019, when the artist Joey Holder and five graduates from Nottingham Trent University decided to open a studio space to develop and offer the community a different view on the world, a way to open their eyes with creativity and belief. In a talk with Chaos Magic members Wingshan Smith, Adam Beaumont, Thorn Greensides, Harry Martin, Francis Slip and Chloe Willis, we discover more about what happens within the walls of the BACKLIT studio.
We cover a wide range of different disciplines and styles of work. Not all of us are witchy, but some of us are at least adjacent to that
“Magic works really beautifully in the way that we work as artists, which is responsive and setting intentions, which is what we do in rituals and within the community,” the group explain. “We cover a wide range of different disciplines and styles of work. Not all of us are witchy, but some of us are at least adjacent to that. I believe that a lot of us see magic as intrinsic to everything and everyday ritual as part of a practice.”
All the mystery and creation behind Chaos Magic art gains life at BACKLIT. The studio hosts art exhibitions frequently, where the public can consider and appreciate how they feel and see art. Following the witchy and astrological theme of this month’s issue, we dive into Chaos Magic’s upcoming events, which will take us into a celebration of the moon. “The full moon circle we're doing is absolutely astrology,” they say. “We're looking at the full moon and what it is on each day and what that means for that month’s reflections. New moons are a time to foster new connections, start new projects, and acknowledge your growth since the previous new moon.”
If you fancy discovering more about your true self, the unknown, the universe and magical beliefs, then Chaos Magic might be just the place for you
This will be a space for casual discussions and to develop connections with each other as part of the wider community. It is a way of involving people during winter in a magical form, with music, show-and-tell, biscuits and tea, discussing a project or simply existing and appreciating the beauty of life with all its flaws.
If this isn't where you feel at home, Chaos Magic offers Touching Ground - a year-long project of workshops, exhibitions, and gardening mornings which will restart in Spring 2023. “It sort of weaves together a more classic kind of gardening project with lots of magic happening as a part of that. Everything we do is interwoven with magic, including manifesting the spirits of the garden. It is done with magical practice around it, surrounding it. We will invite communities across the city to connect more deeply to the earth and each other and explore creative practice in an alive and nourishing way.”
The Sunday gardening mornings and creative workshops are at the Curious Tower garden in Victoria Park, as well as gardens in St Ann's and Radford. If you fancy discovering more about your true self, the unknown, the universe and magical beliefs, then Chaos Magic might be just the place for you.
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