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Ithell Colquhoun: Pioneer Surrealist Artist, Occultist, Writer, and Poet (New)
by Ratcliffe, Eric
Publisher: Mandrake of Oxford
Book ID: 9781869928988, 1869928989
The skills of Ithell Colquhoun in her main practice, that of artist and pioneer in this country of surrealistic art, have been long recognised. Additionally, other interests -- alchemy, Earth-magic, active occultism, poetry, druidism, the pre-Christian pagan calendar, the history and membership of the Golden Dawn -- and writing of and involvement in these interests by book publication and in a widely scattered field of correspondence, have created a miscellany of truly gargantuan proportion.
Eric Ratcliffe considered it was time to get together some of these pieces, to add something of what is known of Colquhoun's early life and family history and to take the opportunity of listing a comprehensive calendar of her work and exhibitions. The result is neither strictly biographical nor a treatise on any one subject, but it is a first gathering of the roots, passions and multi-directions of this artist. It is a patchwork containing many launch-pads for exploration of the magical and mythical atmosphere which this artist existed in and created. Here therefore is a contribution towards solving a jigsaw and a wind-catch of the minor cyclones of lthell's dedicatory interests, also serving as a record of her accomplishments in the art field.
'The author gives an excellent account of Colquhoun's artistic career, explaining why she has been so overlooked (she stuck to her principles against the authoritarian demands of the British surrealist clique and consequently was expelled). Ratcliffe places proper emphasis upon the artist's magical activities. She was a member of the OTO, Order of the Pyramid and Sphinx, Order of Holy Wisdom, Ancient Celtic Church and the Druid Order.
Despite having had the good fortune to read many of Colquhoun's magical papers I learnt a great deal from this very well informed work. There is excellent bibliographical information including listings of unpublished typescripts and also as comprehensive as possible listing of her paintings and drawings.' -- Ben Fernee, Caduceus Books
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