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Introducing TLmag34: ‘Precious: A Geology of Being’

Dec 8, 2020

“Visit the interior of the Earth and, by transformation, you will find the hidden stone”. This quote by 15th century alchemist Basilius Valentinus opens up TLmag’s latest Autumn/Winter print edition — co-edited by visual artist Amy Hilton.

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Text by Lise Coirier and Amy Hilton

Whilst we are still in the midst of a global pandemic, TLmag continues to reach out to the designers and artists who inspire us in an effort to connect with one another and exchange ideas. The resulting Autumn/Winter print edition, with a total of four distinct covers, looks into how the word ‘precious’ can be (re-)defined and how, in recent years, the earth itself has become the most precious of all things. TLmag34 is a true collaboration created together with Amy Hilton. Her introduction reads:

In these fraught times, there is the necessity for a deeper consideration of our own individual and collective ontologies – into the very nature of who and why we ‘are’.There needs to be a shift in our focus about what we deem ‘precious’. I believe this calls for a deep reflection, into the very nature of our relationship to the Earth, and even beyond that, to the greater Cosmos. Whatever our quest might be in this cycle of life, we need a return to the essence. Alchemists of the Middle-Ages postulated that a part of the process leading to the discovery of the “philosopher’s stone” was the importance of turning substances ‘inside out’. Going ‘inside’ to better perceive the ‘outside.’ To engage with a ‘geology of being’ is a return to the depths of ancient metaphors and to the origins of life itself. It is perhaps in our interest to borrow from Alchemy: to view what surrounds us, what lies within us, and what connects us, with greater introspection and to re-evaluate the true meaning of everything.

Lise Coirier, editor-in-chief of TLmag, adds to Amy’s introspective column with a look towards the history of sharing knowledge in a text titled ‘In Search of the Lost Diamond’:

Printing ideas and thoughts has long been part of the tradition of transmitting knowledge. Writing by hand is an all-too-often forgotten physical act. Machines will not replace people. And the gesture about which we are speaking here is part of a movement that is at the very heart of thought, writing and age-old tales. It is living energy, undoubtedly the strongest force that animates the being and connects it to others. As Franck-André Jamme wrote in one of his collections composed in the space of one night, “Flawless Diamond” (éditions Une, 1998), this energy hits hard. “Then, immediately, I will be on her lips, I will open up my entire heaven. To the circulation of love.” This flow of both terrestrial and heavenly forces that our beliefs try to channel is tied to our roots, our land, and our resources. By going beyond consciousness and materiality to connect with the elements of the subconscious, dreams and the fantastic, the being reaches multiple forms of spirituality and esoterism. By opening a window onto this unique journey for better personal growth, this edition of TLmag on the theme “Precious: A Geology of Being” explores the hidden facets of each by connecting them to forces that are simultaneously geological, earthly and cosmic. It also opens up the discussion about good and evil, this powerful desire to reconnect with nature, with the mineral and organic riches that enable us to exist and to feel alive. One part of this universe is captured by artists and designers, by thinkers and poets, by seekers and collectors.  While the light may be at our thresholds, it sometimes seems to be moving away. Creators, enthusiasts and visionaries, those who perceive the hidden forces and know how to handle them, in moments of ritual, pagan or sacred, are all welcome within these pages. It is the present moment that counts, in the search for that unreachable, labyrinthine, epic, episodic, critical time. The diamond (was) found. At that moment, everything is visible but stays invisible. Everything seems clear, but everything remains opaque. At that moment, the diamond shines at the bottom of a glass of water. “And at the bottom NO MYSTERY either. Because we ourselves are each a mystery, at every moment.” Rest in peace, may your soul be in peace, Franck-André Jamme.


Oliver Basciano, Martina Bjorn, Lara Chapman, Tracy Lynn Chemaly, Lise Coirier, Y-JeanDelsalle, Blaire Dessent, Vincent Fournier, Sibylle Grandchamp, Amy Hilton, Marie Honnay, Mélanie Huchet, Mechteld Jungerius, PetraLafond, Nœ Duchafour Lawrance, Adrian Madlener, Rachel Morón, Baudouin Oosterlynck, Herve Pedroille, Keiko Sumino, Marek Torčík, Frederik Vercruysse and Danica Wilcox.

You can buy a digital or physical copy of ‘TLmag34 Precious: A Geology of Being’ by clicking here.

 The Roter Kamm impact crater in southwest Namibia, Photo: NASA
Lucia Bru, 2019,(both), argile/clay, Photo: Axel Vervoordt Gallery
Amy Hilton, 2017, ink on paper, Photo: Courtesy of the Artist & Spazio Nobile
Amy Hilton, 2019, ink on tracing paper, Photo: Courtesy of the Artist & Spazio Nobile

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