The Apothecary, probably first appeared in the 15thCentury, as the keeper of the medicines, and the brewer and dispenser of healing herbs. He was both healer and magician. The role evolved from the alchemist who, desirous to achieve metaphysical transformations, had acquired a knowledge of organic salts, gun powders, paints, potions and poisons and the all important skills of the chemical processes that might have turned base metal to gold.
This combination of knowledge, superstition and magic somehow propelled us into the age of modern medicine but left behind a rich inheritance for the artist; full of symbolism, instructive in process, a source of materials, and a potent pot of allegory and mysticism.
The artists, delving into the apothecary’s chest have found poisons, gun powder, pigments and the techniques of metallurgy to create works that capture the elusive, ephemeral, and the mysterious qualities of this legacy.