Alchemy: Exploring Metaphorical Transformations and Arts-Based Research

Conference Schedule:
Alchemy: Exploring Metaphorical Transformations and Arts-Based Research

Alchemy: Exploring Metaphorical Transformations and Arts-Based Research

Date: November 4-5, 2023
Location: University of Oxford, UK
                 Online option available
Cost:        170 GBP
90 GBP (Online)
Abstract: Deadline September 30, 2023

“Many have said of Alchemy, that it is for the making of gold and silver. For me such is not the aim, but to consider only what virtue and power may lie in medicines.” – Paracelsus

We are delighted to announce our forthcoming Alchemy: Exploring Metaphorical Transformations and Arts-Based Research conference. This transdisciplinary event aims to delve into the intriguing world of alchemy, with a particular focus on its metaphorical function within the realms of creativity and scholarship, specifically through arts-based research.

The conference aims to bring together scholars, researchers, creatives, and graduate students, offering a unique opportunity to explore the profound connections between alchemy, various knowledge disciplines, and the creative expressions of arts-based research. The event seeks to illuminate how alchemy’s metaphors, symbols, and transformative processes have influenced and continue to influence our understanding of the human psyche and creative expression.

Keynote Speaker: Renowned Jungian/alchemy scholar and novelist Susan Rowland
Guest Speaker: NYT bestselling author/TV personality Lisa Oz

Themes and Topics:

We invite abstract submissions for 15-minute presentations that explore various aspects of alchemy, with a special emphasis on its metaphorical function within arts-based research. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Arts-based research as alchemy: exploring parallels between the two, discussing latest developments in ABR methods as alchemy.
  • Alchemical themes and creative inspiration: discussing how alchemy can spark different modes and types of creativity.
  • Alchemy and poetic inquiry: presenting and performing poetry and poetic writing and research techniques based on alchemical methods, styles, and models.
  • Jungian Archetypes in Alchemical Symbolism: Unravelling the connections between Jungian archetypes and the symbolic language of alchemy in the quest for individuation.
  • Alchemical Transformation in Psychotherapy: Examining how alchemical principles can inform therapeutic processes and personal growth in Jungian psychology.
  • Alchemy and the Unconscious Mind: Analysing the parallels between alchemical transformation and the workings of the unconscious as explored in the depth psychology of Carl Jung.
  • Alchemical Symbolism in Art and Literature: Exploring how artists and writers have used alchemical symbolism in their creative expressions to depict psychological and spiritual transformations.
  • Alchemy, Dreams, and Active Imagination: Investigating the role of alchemy in the interpretation of dreams and the practice of active imagination in Jungian therapy.
  • Alchemy and Embodied Practices: Exploring how arts-based research can engage with alchemical principles through somatic and embodied practices.
  • Alchemical Metaphors in Contemporary Society: Discussing the relevance of alchemical metaphors in understanding contemporary challenges and transformations.
  • Alchemy and Ecopsychology: Examining the connections between alchemy, nature, and ecological consciousness in the context of arts-based research.
  • Alchemy, Ritual, and Transformation: Investigating how alchemical rituals and practices can inspire personal and collective transformation in arts-based research.
  • The Language of Alchemy: Interpreting alchemical texts, symbols, and hermetic literature in the context of Jungian psychology and arts-based research.
  • Alchemy and alchemists throughout history: spotlighting the works and paths of both famous and lesser-known alchemists throughout the ages.

**Participants interested in attending the conference without presenting a paper are also welcome.

Submission Guidelines: Abstracts should be submitted through by September 30, 2023.

Publication Opportunities:

Selected papers presented at the conference will be invited for publication in a special post-conference proceeding. Further details on submission guidelines and timelines will be provided after the conference.

Contact Information:

For any inquiries or clarifications, please email us on

We hope you may join us as we embark on a transformative journey through the realms of alchemy and arts-based research. We look forward to welcoming you to this enriching and inspiring conference!

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