The Art of Freemasons and other Secret Societies

Posted October 6th, 2012

Architecture, Art History, Books

The Art of Freemasons and the objects, the traditional Old Boys Club is using for it’s rituals has been overlooked for a long time, but there is a lot of fascinating stuff to look at. Some of it looks like it came straight out of a Steampunk fantasy film which is probably why the Freemasons are the most popular of groups to use for conspiracy fiction. Above you see a watercolor postcard entitled “A Knight Templar’s Dream,” in which a Mason dreams of an event in Chicago with the planning committee members’ heads flying around him. The image comes from the Phoenixmasonry Masonic Online Museum which has collected a whole lot of images over here. There is a lot of stuff to discover for historians, designers and collectors of weird objects and manuscripts. There is also and this page looking at “FREEMASONRY and LITERATURE, MUSIC, ART and ARCHITECTURE” with more.

The Art of Freemasons
art of freemasons
A rare Arts & Crafts style cocktail serving tray, made with mahogany inlaid with butterfly wings.

Collectors Weekly, an excellent site to waste some time on lazy sunday, has a most interesting article on The Art of Freemasons this week with lots of cool images.

Collectors Weekly: “For some, Masonic and other fraternal items, particularly those from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, are simply sexy collectibles. For others, these groups are linked to devil-worship and sinister plots to install a New World Order, ideas fed by fictional films like 2006’s “DaVinci Code.” But most cooler heads view them as rather tame social clubs, where older gentlemen talk about philosophy, science, and God, pausing to occasionally invest a bit of their time (which they have a lot of) and money (not so much) in charity.

“All the conspiracy theories that we’re out to control the world are a bunch of hogwash,” says Dave Lettelier, a Freemason, retired cabinetmaker, and the curator of the Phoenixmasonry Masonic Museum. “Most Masonic Lodges today have a hard time repairing the roof of their Lodge or the air-conditioning system. This thing about world domination, it’s so hokey. As Masons, we just laugh at that.”

Mackey doesn’t feel threatened by secret societies, and he has routinely bought and sold fraternal artifacts in venues like eBay. He says he likes “knowing the secrets you’re not supposed to know, without spending all the initiation fees some require in joining and going up through their orders.” Read more about The Art of Freemasons over at Collectors Weekly. Fascinating stuff!

Freemason Art and Symbols