Honoring the body and the occult with artist Allan Spiers (part one)

CHICAGO — Looking across western culture, women and women’s bodies have dominated mainstream depictions of Witches and the practice of Witchcraft. In a famous drawing from 1798, two nude elderly witches fly on a broom over trees and fields (Francisca Goya, Linda maestra). In 1497, artist Albrecht Durer depicted the meeting of four nude young witches (Durer, The Four Witches). Far more recently, in popular films like Witches of Eastwick (1987) and the cult classic The Craft (1996), the transformation from average woman to witch is depicted visually with increased displays of female sexuality and body exposure. For better or worse, the woman’s body has had profound meaning within traditional western-based visual witchcraft narratives.