The High Priestess, Artist Residency, Joshua Tree, 2015





THE HIGH PRIESTESS: “The School For Psychic and Water Based Mediumship”
Joshua Tree, CA
March 27th – April 2nd

Facilitated by: Liz Armstrong, Genevieve Belleveau, Maja D’Aoust, Ryan Ingersol, Ron Rege, Eliza Swann, and Laurie Weeks

“She alone dares and wishes to know from within, where she, the outcast, has never ceased to hear the resonance of fore-language. She lets the other language speak—the language of 1,000 tongues which knows neither enclosure nor death. To life she refuses nothing. Her language does not contain, it carries; it does not hold back, it makes possible.”
― Hélène Cixous, “The Laugh of the Medusa”

The High Priestess represents wisdom, illumination, inner knowledge, and intuitive understanding. In traditional tarot imagery, The High Priestess holds a book in her lap that destines her to study and knowledge – because she is not reading it, we are given reason to think that this volume is nothing other than herself. The High Priestess represents a wisdom akin to vertical memory, which Plato describes as the memory of the transcendent self: “Seeing that the soul is immortal, and has beheld all things both in this world and the nether realms, she has acquired knowledge of all and everything….thus it would seem that research and learning are wholly recollection.” (Plato, Menon 81).

In an effort to mine the wisdom of our transcendent selves, “The School for Psychic and Water Based Mediumship” consists of a week long series of automatic painting and writing activities centered around sustainability, spirituality, and consciousness. We will be exploring desert terrain, engaging in collaborative art and writing exercises, investigating patriarchal language systems and exorcising the alphabet, visiting local spiritual centers, practicing regular meditation, and participating in lectures offered by visiting artists. This series of workshops takes place in Joshua Tree and will culminate in the creation of a High Priestess ‘zine as well as a public presentation of our findings in Los Angeles.

This gathering seeks to traverse boundaries of medium, materiality, representation, and embodiment to provide its community with tools to create vocabularies for reconciling our selves and our work to each other and to our world. How can art contribute to cultural and psychic hygiene for the benefit of our planet? How do art and language function in a patriarchal society? What language do we have for mystery within our current systems? What can we do as artists to enact change? The Golden Dome is interested in fostering a co-creative environment of experimental pedagogy that fosters community, collaboration, feedback, and the collapse of boundaries between life and art. Please see the syllabus for detailed descriptions of our lessons. Faculty members include: Liz Armstrong, Genevieve Belleveau, Maja D’Aoust, Ryan Ingersol, Ron Rege, Eliza Swann, and Laurie Weeks.

Photographs by Natalia Molina and Monica Uszerowicz