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Topic: Codex Coemeterium - Catalogue of the Greater Necromantic Spirits
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Oct 8, 2012 04:15PM)
A short trailer for something I have been working on for the past year and a half. I have test run iteration I and II, and this final incarnation will be test run at a gig at the end of the month. Then I will unleash this plague on the world.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kUiOHhbXhX4&list=HL1349628742&feature=mh_lolz

[URL=http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/855/img8253d.jpg/][IMG]http://imageshack.us/a/img855/6384/img8253d.jpg[/IMG][/URL]

[URL=http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/210/img8246z.jpg/][IMG]http://imageshack.us/a/img210/7080/img8246z.jpg[/IMG][/URL]
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Oct 8, 2012 04:22PM)
WOO HOOOO!!!
On a more reserved note, these look stunning!!! any idea of how limited these will be yet?
Message: Posted by: Michael_MacDonald (Oct 8, 2012 04:47PM)
These look great brother
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Oct 8, 2012 08:19PM)
They are a great selection of artistic skeletal horror delights
Message: Posted by: Mind illusionist (Oct 9, 2012 01:44AM)
A beautiful set. It looks like a fun game to play...
Message: Posted by: KOTAH (Oct 9, 2012 08:38AM)
The amazing creative offerings of Frater Tham continue



Beautiful work indeed.




KOtah
Message: Posted by: spookyone (Oct 9, 2012 01:20PM)
COOL!
Message: Posted by: Christopher Gould (Oct 9, 2012 01:49PM)
This looks wonderful Lucian, it really does. It is a high bar indeed that we all work to these days. I love the video too!
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Oct 9, 2012 05:27PM)
Thanks for the kind words everyone.

The images derive from 3 major themes of medieval art; The Triumph of Death, the Dance of Death and Death and the Maiden. Images illustrating the 'Triumph of Death' would show death in combat with the living and grinding mankind under it's wheels. It was about the futility of our war against mortality. Images illustrating the 'Dance of Death' would depict a celebratory death gleefully leading people of all ages and social strata away, an allegory about death as the great equalizer. Images of 'Death and the Maiden' illustrate the transitory nature of youth and beauty. There are also reproductions of illuminations from the "office of the dead" chapters of various Books of Hours.
Message: Posted by: TH1 (Oct 9, 2012 06:04PM)
Wow!
Message: Posted by: Magical Dimensions (Oct 9, 2012 07:59PM)
Holy cow!!!!!!!

Now that is SOMETHING that looks AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!


WOW!!!!

You out did yourself on this.......




R
Message: Posted by: Wizard of Oz (Oct 9, 2012 09:05PM)
I second TH1...make that 2 "Wow!"s.
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Nov 28, 2012 09:59PM)
For more information about this project, there is a video here: http://www.mediumarts.ca/codex.html

I have worked this material in the real world. I think you could find this useful!
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Nov 28, 2012 10:30PM)
Hi Lucien - just ordered mine....

9 or less to go :)
Message: Posted by: Christopher Gould (Nov 29, 2012 06:43AM)
Me too!
Message: Posted by: YitzhakNoDice (Nov 29, 2012 09:43AM)
Amazing workmanship and a great idea! Thanks!
Message: Posted by: brehan (Nov 29, 2012 01:19PM)
Looks great Lucien!
Message: Posted by: Balaram (Dec 1, 2012 09:49PM)
Yet another dispicable travesty inflicted on unsuspecting humanity, already trembling as Darkest Night approaches...
Well-thought out and--smart, just smart!
Drunks at the bar, I don't know--but if you the pleasure to work for an intelligent audience-just fantastic.
I am a big fan of his Tarot, hope to add this.
Hip Hip Lucien! Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!!
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Dec 5, 2012 07:49PM)
Mine arrived today... oooo the holidays!!!!

You likely saw Darcy's video - then they are exactly what he described and they are sweet... and an easy way to know what every card is without seeing their faces ;).... I love skeletal horrors!!!! There are quite a few classic and modified spirit magic techniques - and the kit is designed to be a prortable 45 minute show.

I love the coffin nails :)

The whole things is nice and eerie.... I just need to age the deck a bit (personal taste) and use more sinister paper squares (personal taste).

Since the spirits can also be used for various purposes - you can invoke their powers to do various magic and mentalism effects.

Plus they are just nice and creepy to give to someone to look thru - for those hating a death card in a tarot... this is the ultimate deck of death images so your hand would melt off touching them.

Good stuff!!!!

One quibble - you should send a COA with a # for making them more collectable and special.... so if you decide to do that... I'll dub mine #13 (even though only 12 were made!!!).... actually, give me #4 as it has death connotations!!!
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Dec 5, 2012 08:00PM)
I claim COA #666 :devilish:
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Dec 6, 2012 06:04PM)
I am pleased that you are enjoying the Codex, good Doctor! Fair point about the COA. I will fabricate them, and mail them to whover amongst the recipients express a wish to have one. The final 4 sets here will have the COA sent with the package.
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Dec 6, 2012 06:49PM)
I am thoroughly enjoying this! You can tell Lucien has tested and worked this material. I especially like the p**k device. I am also very intrigued with the reading primer included. all in all fantastic work. I would suggest jumping on one of those last sets before they are gone!! You will regret it if you do not!
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Dec 6, 2012 09:27PM)
Andre - 2 sets in Toronto???? We are going to cause an interdimensional rift here soon with all our related items... a sink hole into the abyss of azathoth if we are not careful
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Dec 6, 2012 09:30PM)
Having been to Toronto, and would agree that it is the amorphous blight of nethermost confusion which blasphemes and bubbles at the center of all Canada! ;)
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Dec 7, 2012 04:27AM)
[quote]
On 2012-12-06 22:27, Dr Spektor wrote:
Andre - 2 sets in Toronto???? We are going to cause an interdimensional rift here soon with all our related items... a sink hole into the abyss of azathoth if we are not careful
[/quote]
Too late, my good doctor. Already shapeless and bloated horrors are seeping through extra dimensional fissures, and madness consumes the populous, prodding them to place those very abominations into positions of power. Such is the strangeness of Toronto mayoral politics!
Message: Posted by: Allan Kardek (Dec 7, 2012 08:19AM)
[quote]
On 2012-12-07 05:27, necroloid wrote:
[quote]
On 2012-12-06 22:27, Dr Spektor wrote:
Andre - 2 sets in Toronto???? We are going to cause an interdimensional rift here soon with all our related items... a sink hole into the abyss of azathoth if we are not careful
[/quote]
Too late, my good doctor. Already shapeless and bloated horrors are seeping through extra dimensional fissures, and madness consumes the populous, prodding them to place those very abominations into positions of power. Such is the strangeness of Toronto mayoral politics!
[/quote]

LOL! I love it! You summed it up perfectly!
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Dec 7, 2012 10:28AM)
Allan you getting a set too?

Wild
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Dec 8, 2012 10:30AM)
[quote]
On 2012-12-06 19:49, necroloid wrote:
I am thoroughly enjoying this! You can tell Lucien has tested and worked this material. I especially like the p**k device. I am also very intrigued with the reading primer included. all in all fantastic work. I would suggest jumping on one of those last sets before they are gone!! You will regret it if you do not!
[/quote]

The deck is great for doing readings... not cold-reading but sincere oracular readings. Glad you are enjoying it. I am quite proud of the marking system, and I urge anyone with the deck to try the Astral Projection routine, whether at an event or for friends and family at an after-dinner party. Cheers!
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Dec 8, 2012 05:12PM)
I hope those of you who were on the fence on this got in because it now appears to be sold out. Lucien does mention that MAYBE there might be a smaller set consisting of the cards and p**k device. I hope so. the p**k device is great. Congrats to those who got in on time!
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Dec 8, 2012 10:09PM)
Thanks everyone. It is sold out. I had set one Codex aside for someone, who just couldn't make it happen with Yule fast approaching. I therefore have one more Kit sitting in my studio.
Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Dec 10, 2012 10:15AM)
Lucien please don't make any more -please!!,,,,
Message: Posted by: Christopher Gould (Jan 1, 2013 10:49AM)
I am starting to catch up with some post Xmas reviewing.
I have had the Codex for a few weeks now and rather than giving first impressions, I can give a full review from the position of having fully explored, read and played with the ideas.

First thing that really took me was the overall look of the thing. It is not aged and no real attempt to age it has been made. This seemed odd at first considering it is a bizarre prop. We are all so used to props being aged out of recognition before we get them. my own stuff goes through many days of elaborate aging. However, this is the first item that I have bought of this kind. So I am a creator looking at something anew from the point of view of a consumer. One great big fact hit me in the face like a hammer - this thing is so well made and finished to such a high professional standard that *it did not matter* that it was not aged. Sure, as DrS has suggested, you could age it yourself, but I am thinking 'why bother?', in fact I think there is a distinct possibility of reducing it's aesthetic value by doing so. This thought is something of a revelation and a revolution for me! Seeing this beauty will inform my own work in the future, there is no doubt about that.

Lucian is a professional artist and it shows in every aspect of this piece. I really think that counts for something. We have come a long way from the clip-art infested magic of yore, and Lucian's work reminds us of one remarkable development in magic in recent years, and one that is particular to bizarre magic. I actually think we may be producing art here. It will take a while to see if this statement is true. For example it is easy for both Lucian and I to spot something that is visually aspirational, we have both been trained for years to *be* visually literate. However, I have always thought magicians to be fairly low in the tree of visual literacy. This is not me putting magicians down (Gawd bless 'em), it is just an empirical observation... It is not in a magician's mindset - lack of awareness of aesthetics is just a byproduct of the focus being on other aspects of the art; I do not want to sound condescending (well, not excessively so) . However, in the Bizarre branch there is a new sensibility of aesthetic awareness which is developing. Magicians *are* beginning to value and get pleasure from something that is well made and aspires to be art.
For an artist, this is fascinating - for if a new art is evolving it will have a *function*, or rather, it *could* have a function. The dilemma of the arts is that their social function has been reduced over time, until we reach today's sad state of art being either an elitist pursuit, or a financial investment. Both contexts are vile. If magic, and Bizarre magic (which will need to to be somewhat redefined) adopts art and expresses itself in the context of art, we could reclaim the shamanistic roots of art - this would be a freeking BIG deal.
I ramble, but it is relevant to Lucian's work, which is visually literate, well crafted and aesthetically uplifting. I think I spent a good couple of hours just opening the box and looking at the contents with little interest as to what they 'did' - I was captivated by the simple pleasure of just messing around and slowly recapturing the feeling of being a child opening his first magic set (although I do not recommend that you obtain this piece to give to your children next Xmas!). I actually do not think that I have had such a thrill as this, in this context since taking up magic.
If you have this, you have art and you are lucky and should feel honored to own it.
So what are the trick huh?
Well as has been alluded to above there are some old classics 'stripped to the bone' and ghoulishly reassembled. They are good solid workers, some of the principles are really easy, so you can just get on with it and concentrate on the performance. So within a hour or two, you are 'good to go' and put on a rudimentary show. As you perform the pieces you can use them to develop your own storytelling skills and end up with a complete piece of macabre theater that you carry around with you under your arm.
However, delve deeper and you uncover some real interesting concepts. First of all the context and setting are truly fascinating. At first I thought it was going to be just another bit of bizarrist cornball, like all the B players put out. I mean, you know, death, skeletons, ye olde stuff - you know, for the sake of it. *Here is an old mentalism routine, lets stick a skeleton on it and flog it to the Bizarre community, that should make a buck or two....* I could not have been further from the truth, this is a wonderful, coherent piece of work, the tale you tell is convincing and *genuinely* creepy. The thinking behind this really becomes apparent when you go to the 'Secret Cemetery' (those that know will know what I mean here), the complexity of feelings around necromancy have never been better explored. The combination of fear (you are communing with a rotted corpse exhumed from a grave ferheavensake), sadness and a strange sort of warmth for the spectral creature who has appeared to help you is a real heady mix and the potential for exploring this in the full is here for the first time. If nothing else, Lucien needs to get full credit for the concept of the 'Secret Cemetery' and those of you who are luck enough to own this will have one of the strongest ideas in the Bizarre that I can think of.
I kind of want to leave it on that point. I could talk about the clever marking system, the actual routines, the 'must-have' bizarrist's pendulum, or my obsessive need to chant the names of the spirits! There is a lot that I talk about here. All I am going to say is that this is one of, if not, the most treasured of my possessions. I am so glad I got what must have been one of the last copies of this piece of artistry.
I am going to keep a very close eye on Lucien - I suggest you all do the same!
Message: Posted by: Lucien Astor (Jan 1, 2013 08:23PM)
Wow, thanks Christopher. Coming from one of the luminaries in our field, this means a lot. The Secret Cemetery concept is something I am quite proud of, but it owes a debt to much of the conceptual material I've collected from Alchemy Moon over the years... the blending of magic, the imagination, and it's strange intersection with 'real' magic. Thanks!
Message: Posted by: Isper (Feb 27, 2013 10:51PM)
I am a proud owner of one of these. Since it was priced at the upper limit of what I can spend on such things, I almost passed on this one. However, I am so glad now that I did not and invested in it.

The best way I can describe this as a collection of functional works of art that can be used and combined in various ways to express the art of each individual performer’s performance style. In addition to the high quality items included, the set also includes a book and DVD containing a few fully developed routines, some skeleton “bare bones” presentations and a great deal of inspiration to make your own.

Another thing that was really appreciated is all the techniques mentioned in the routines are also fully taught in the DVD.

Definitely look forward to other creations by Lucien in the future.
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Nov 9, 2014 08:22AM)
I have one of these for sale below.
Message: Posted by: Isper (May 9, 2015 10:50PM)
Because of some unexpected financial obligations I have one for sale in the Tricks and Effects for Sale section.