|Still from “The Love Witch” (2016)
I’ll be there in person this weekend as part of 2 events (and lingering to watch some films, too):
This Friday, Jan 27th at 7pm: A Cinema of the Occult panel with Peter and Janaka to kick off the festival
Details about the festival and events:
Dead of Winter: Cinema of the Occult, Friday, January 27 – Thursday, February 2, 2017
The Brattle is excited to team-up with three noted authors to co-curate this series of magical movies: Peter Bebergal, Pam Grossman, and Janaka Stucky. Each will contribute their own introductions and illuminations for films during the series and we kick off the program with a panel featuring a conversation between the three on Friday, Jan 27. This series explores images of the occult in cinema – mostly dealing with the Western traditions of witchcraft and ritual magic – from 1950s (NIGHT OF THE DEMON, BELL BOOK & CANDLE) to today (THE WITCH, THE LOVE WITCH). A full listing of all of the films can be found here.
Peter Bebergal is the author of Season of the Witch: How the Occult Saved Rock and Roll and the forthcoming Strange Frequencies.
Pam Grossman is an independent curator, writer, and teacher of magical practice and history. She is the creator of Phantasmaphile.com and the author of the illuminated manifesto, What Is A Witch.
Janaka Stucky is an American poet, performer, and publisher. He is the founding editor of the independent publisher Black Ocean and the author of the full-length poetry collection, The Truth Is We Are Perfect.
A few quick updates for you all, in celebration of Samhain season:
is Ghostly Intimations
, an evening of spooky lectures at Staten Island’s Fort Tompkins, co-sponsored by the Alice Austen House and the Morbid Anatomy Museum, and happening TONIGHT
, Saturday the 29th
. I’ll be giving an abridged version of my “Witch Pictures: Female Magic and Transgression” presentation. Other speakers include Harold Schechter, Corinne May Botz, and Ronni Thomas, and there will be a cocktail party at the Alice Austen House afterwards. Your favorite psychic phenomena photographer and mine, Shannon Taggart, has pulled this all together, so it’s going to be an excellent evening no doubt!
|Alice Austen dressed as a witch, courtesy of Alice Austen House
Date: Saturday, October 29th
Time: 8pm – 11pm
Location: ***Offsite – Fort Wadsworth, 210 New York Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10305.
Get spooked at Fort Tompkins! Join us for an evening of presentations exploring the fringes of photography, Victorian art, and occult phenomena. Co-presented by the Alice Austen House and Morbid Anatomy Museum, hosted by National Park Service inside a nineteenth century fort! Meet at Fort Wadsworth Visitor Center (210 New York Avenue, Staten Island). Bring your own flashlight! Cocktail party at Alice Austen House to follow at 10pm. Tickets required and must be purchased in advance.
Author Harold Schechter
will discuss the art of writing about serial killers and the chilling true-account of Belle Gunness, the Lady Bluebeard, and the dark tourism around her crimes.
Photographer Corinne May Botz
will discuss her book “The Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death,” an exploration of miniature crime scene models that were built in the 1940’s and 50’s by criminologist Frances Glessner Lee (1878 – 1962). The models, based on actual homicides, suicides, and accidental deaths, were created to train detectives to assess visual evidence.
Getty Images’ Director of Visual Trends and co-organizer of the Occult Humanities Conference at NYU, will present a lecture on “Witch Pictures: Female Magic and Transgressions in Western Art”.
, the Morbid Anatomy Filmmaker-in-Residence, discusses mad science, mysticism, romance, and necrophilia within the macabre true story behind his feature film: “No Place for The Living: The Strange Tale of Carl von Cosel”, complete with a chilling score composed by theremin expert Paul Bergel.
Next up is the Comic Arts Brooklyn
festival happening on Saturday, November 5th.
I’ll be at the Tin Can Forest
table, helping sling books and prints and signing copies of our illuminated incantation, “What Is A Witch
.” The festival is at Mt. Carmel Gymnasium, 12 Havemeyer St. in Williamsburg from 11am to 7pm
. It features 100+ exhibitors, and best of all, it is FREE, so do come along and say howdy.
Yesterday, I was on HuffPost Live, talking about witches and doing a reading from the comic book. I had a an absolute ball doing it. You can watch the segment here.
I was also featured in this Toronto Star article about the rise of witchcraft.
And I was over the moon when I first read this wonderfully kind review of “What Is A Witch” on The Beat.
Lastly, if you haven’t procured your copy of “What Is A Witch” yet (or fancy another), you can order directly from Tin Can Forest Press
, or pick it up in person at one of these fine establishments:
The Alchemist’s Kitchen
As promised for you Brooklynites and Brooklyn-adjacents, here’s more information about the event we’re having at Catland in Bushwick on June 10th to celebrate the release of What Is A Witch, the comic book / illuminated manifesto I’ve written in collaboration with luminous illustrators, Tin Can Forest. It’s being produced and hosted by spectacle mongers, Atlas Obscura, and they have pulled out all the stops.
The soiree will feature:
* Witchly dances by the marvelously mythic Desert Sin!
* Otherworldly music by harpist chanteuse, Ellena Phillips!
* Alcoholic potions by Ravenous Craft!
* Tarot & palmistry sessions by Catland’s seers!
* A special illustrated reading of “What Is A Witch” by yours truly!
It’s going to be an exquisite evening, and I’m truly honored to have the book feted in such a magickal manner. Here are all of the juicy details. I hope you’ll join me:
Night Flight! What Is A Witch book party with Pam Grossman
Hosted by Atlas Obscura & Catland
Friday, June 10th, 7:30pm
, 987 Flushing Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11206 (Map
$28 tix available here
(or $45 tix include a signed, discounted copy of the book – $20 value)
Join the New York Obscura Society and Catland Books
in an immersive celebration of What Is A Witch
by the inimitable writer, curator, and Phantasmaphile
creator Pam Grossman and occult illustrators Tin Can Forest
. This most unusual comic book is a lyrical reflection of the witch and her many guises. A visual spell, its dazzlingly gorgeous images combine with powerful wit and wisdom to create an illuminated manuscript that explores the many layers of the ultimate icon of feminine power. We celebrate the book with a wild and wondrous evening, full of music, performance, and magick.
This evening is specially designed to transport you through a world of enchantment. Be charmed by the mesmerizing dances of Desert Sin
Dance Theater Co. and hypnotized by the siren songs of harpist and chantress Ellena Phillips… Imbibe the power of plants with foraged cocktail potions by Ravenous Craft… Dive deep into the divinatory powers of the occult with readings by Catland’s own Tarot and Palm readers… and journey through the world of the witch with a reading and conversation with Pam Grossman.
This event is an essential magical experience for the curious, the mystically-inclined, and the most wild of wonder-seekers. Come, celebrate, and be charmed!
Pam Grossman is a writer, curator, and teacher of magical practice and history. She is the creator of Phantasmaphile,
a blog that specializes in esoteric and fantastical art. Her writing has appeared in Abraxas Journal, Sciences Occultes, Sabat, Huffington Post, MSN, Film Comment, and elsewhere. Pam’s group art shows and projects have been featured by such outlets as Artforum, The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Art in America. She is Associate Editor of Fulgur Esoterica and the co-organizer of the Occult Humanities Conference at NYU. She lives in Brooklyn with her fellow and their two feline familiars.
I’m looking forward to celebrating with you in my hometown. Be sure to get your tickets here.
And there will be more events in NYC and beyond coming soon, so watch this space!
Lastly, for those of you who have pre-ordered What Is A Witch already – THANK YOU for your support! Books (and prints if you were lucky enough to snag some) will be shipping out in mid-June. I hope you love it as much as I loved conjuring it.
I am over the moon to finally announce the imminent arrival of “What Is A Witch,” a comic book of a sort with text by me and images by the incredible illustrators Tin Can Forest! What is “What Is A Witch,” you ask? It’s a lyrical reflection of the witch and her many guises. A visual spell, a kind of a poem put to pictures, an ode to feminine magick. We’re calling it an “illuminated manifesto,” and that’s the name that I think suits it best. We’ll be launching it at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival the weekend of May 14th and 15th, and the three of us will be there in person to watch her take flight. You can pre-order your copy here, and if you order before May 15th, you get a gorgeous free print! Here are all of the juicy details:
What Is A Witch
Tin Can Forest Press presents “What Is A Witch” an illuminated manifesto on witchcraft.
Written by Pam Grossman,
Images by Tin Can Forest.
Launching at Toronto Comic Arts Festival 2016.
Pre-ordered books ship with small print until May 15
Conjure an image of a witch in your mind’s eye, and you’ll find s/he can take many different shapes. Evil, beautiful, hideous, holy, a sinner who just might save us all – this multifaceted archetype is a dark layer-cake of legends and associations. Written by Phantasmaphile’s Pam Grossman and artwork by Canada’s occult sweethearts Tin Can Forest, What Is A Witch is a an illuminated incantation, a crystalline invocation, a lovingly-crafted celebration of the world’s most magical icon.
Pam Grossman is a writer, curator, and teacher of magical practice and history. She is the creator of Phantasmaphile, a blog that specializes in esoteric and fantastical art. Her writing has appeared in Abraxas Journal, Sciences Occultes, Sabat, Huffington Post, MSN, Film Comment, and elsewhere. Pam’s group art shows and projects have been featured by such outlets as Artforum, The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Art in America. She is Associate Editor of Fulgur Esoterica and the co-organizer of the Occult Humanities Conference at NYU.
Until May 15th, We’re offering a small print free with each pre-ordered book. Each print is approx. 6.5″ x 6.5″, printed on 100% cotton rag Hahnemühle paper and signed by Tin Can Forest. Choose between three prints, viewable on this page below the book cover. Pre-order books ship early June. Single small print price will return to $10 after May 15th.
What Is A Witch
Text by Pam Grossman
Images by Tin Can Forest
Published by Tin Can Forest Press 2016
32 pages, soft cover, saddle stitched, full color, 9″ x 11.75″
Printed in Canada on ©FSC paper containing
30 percent post-consumer waste
ISBN : 978-0-9880222-3-2
signed by Tin Can Forest
additional prints with the book are:
add $10.00 for book and two prints
add $20.00 for book and all three prints
Print 1: Ace of Pentacles
Print 2: Inanna
Print 3: Blomsterbohm
If you have a shop you’d like to stock it in, please email info [at] tincanforest . com.
And I am in the process of planning some lovely release events for it in NYC and elsewhere, but do feel free to reach out to me directly if you are interested in perhaps hosting one: phantasmaphile [at] gmail . com.
May can’t come soon enough!
For those of you who missed it, happy to share the full video of the “Art Workings” panel I moderated for “Language of the Birds,” which is now available on Artforum’s website:
“Art Workings” lecture on “Language of the Birds: Occult and Art” at 80WSE Gallery, New York from Artforum on Vimeo.
“Language of the Birds: Occult and Art” was spotlit in The New Yorker’s Goings On About Town section this week:
Thrilled to say we’ve been receiving glowing reviews for “Language of the Birds: Occult and Art,” including a being deemed a MUST SEE by Artforum:
“It’s said that when a culture feels imperiled, it turns to the mystical for solace. That sense of desperation is nowhere apparent in this stunning group show of occult-inflected works, put together by Pam Grossman, who, for example, manages to adroitly pair up the sensuous witchcraft chic of Carol Bove’s sculptural Wunderkammer with the unsettlingly tender, turn-of-the-twentieth-century magickal watercolors of Major-General J.F.C. Fuller: ‘artificial moonlight’ pioneer and professional British Fascist.”
Overjoyed that the opening of the art show I’ve curated, “Language of the Birds: Occult and Art” is nearly here.
It showcases over 60 artists from the last 100 years who have been influenced by ideas of magic and myth, including Leonora Carrington, Kiki Smith, Francesco Clemente, Aleister Crowley, Ira Cohen, Kenneth Anger, Paul Laffoley, and many more. It’s a project I’ve been putting together for the past year, so I’m excited that the planning is coming to a close, and the celebrating and viewing can finally begin. The opening is on Weds, Jan 13th from 6-8pm, and the show is on view from Jan 12th – Feb 13th. I hope you’ll join me!
And I’ve also programmed several evening events in conjunction with the show, as well as bringing back the Occult Humanities Conference on the weekend of Feb 5th-7th. Get your conference tickets now – they’re selling fast!
Full details on all of the above here.
I had a ball getting to talk about witches as feminist icons with Kristen Korvette on Huffington Post Live today. If you’ve got a spare 30 minutes, do give it a gander.
I’m so looking forward to this evening evening, when I’ll be presenting on the archetype of the witch as part of Legacy of the Witch: A Slutist Feminist Festival at Greenpoint’s infamous St. Vitus bar. This will be an extravaganza featuring musicians, burlesque performers, and artists who will all be channeling the dark feminine in celebration of the 2nd anniversary of feminist-forward website, Slutist. Performers include Karyn Crisis’ Gospel of the Witches, Azar Swan, Delphic Oracle, Chicava HoneyChild, The Reverend Mother Flash, Severely Mame, and Minx Arcana, and I’m honored to get to kick the night off by offering a bit of context and invocation of the artistic lineage of which we creators belong.
Doors are 5pm, show starts at 6pm. I’m told the event is sold out, but I’m looking forward to communing with some of you there and then.
I was also honored to be featured in this great Village Voice piece about the festival here.