Witches and Wicked Bodies at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is the UK’s first major exhibition all about the depiction of witches in art. Naturally, when we were up Edinburgh for the final few shows of the Fringe we gathered up our familiars and hopped on a broomstick (actually it was the free shuttle bus) to check it out.
What I find so fascinating about the show is that it kicks off with prints and drawings that were made in the 15th century, a time when belief in witches and the awful things that black magic could do to a good Christian was very powerful and, given the overwhelmingly paternal nature of society back then, it’s hardly surprising to see witches either depicted as hideous old hags or lusty young women out to corrupt virtuous god fearing men. Naturally our entry point is Hideous Hags and Seductive Sorceresses.
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