In times past one of the fundamental goals of the alchemists was to transmute other elements into gold, more correctly termed ‘chrysopoeia’.
Today we know that transmutation from one element to another actually does occur within the nuclear reactors of stars in a process called nucleosynthesis. For larger elements more energy is required, like that in the stellar explosions of supernovas, where gold can be transformed into lead, but sadly not the other way around!
The quilt was made in response to a challenge to members of the Contemporary Quilt group of the Quilters Guild in the UK. The title of the challenge was 'elements' and I was delighted that my quilt was selected, along with 42 others to be displayed in the Contemporary Quilt gallery.
When making the quilt I wanted to try to use some of the secretive symbols used by the ancient alchemists. I also wanted to use colours that reflected their use of lead, mercury, iron and sulphur in their quest - and of course, I had to use real gold.