Most devout Thelemites do know that one of the major holdings of Crowleyana is the Yorke Collection at the Warburg Institute in London which includes, among many other books and papers, Lady Freida Harris’ original painting of the Thoth Tarot Deck. But, for many of us — including me — that’s where our familiarity with this venerable but eccentric institution ends. So I expect that many will be delighted by this fairly in-depth piece on the Warburg that ran in the New Yorker last month. It details its institution, mission statement, contributions to scholarship in general and current challenges to its ongoing existence (regular readers of our blog will recall the announcement from the Warburg as to the happy resolution of its, uh, “negotiations” with the University of London. For all of us who likely will never have the pleasure of visiting the Warburg in present, this article paints a vivid picture of its environs and the delights contained therein.
Here’s a tiny excerpt to give you the flavor of the piecee:
Only as the visitor begins to study the collections does the oddity of the place appear. In the range-finder plates mounted on the shelves, where in a normal library one would expect to see “Spanish Literature, Sixteenth Century” or “Biography, American: E663-664,” there are, instead, signs pointing toward “Magic Mirrors” and “Amulets” and “The Evil Eye.”
Read the whole piece here: http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/03/16/in-the-memory-ward