Sunday, November 21, 2021


The Vision of the Fool

The visionary work of Cecil Collins

Art exists to destroy the world and to create a kingdom which is eternal.

Superstition in Religion is the literal acceptance of mythology and allegory and not realising that it is the significance of a myth that is its reality.
Superstition in Science is thinking that facts are reality.
Superstition in Art is believing that Art is the literal copying and imitating of nature.

The cinema and the camera have killed only that which is inessential in the art of painting.And have therefore done it a great service. For it has helped to restore the art of painting to its rightful funcion. A function altogether profounder than that of the cinema; (for it is no accident that the cinema is the most popular form of visual experience in the degenerate mechanisation of modern society, it is its rightful form of visual communication.)

There is very little on the web about Collins but I did find an excellent essay by the late Peter Fuller in an online magazine called which, sadly, no longer exists but I copied its final paragraph which sums up the importance of Art in our lives:

'[George] Steiner argues that ‘where God’s presence is no longer a tenable supposition and where His absence is no longer a felt, indeed overwhelming weight, certain dimensions of thought and creativity are no longer attainable’. Even if our faith has faltered we must learn to read and to look as if… We must make ‘a wager on transcendence’ or we will find ourselves cut off from the great and consoling power of art altogether. Cecil Collins’s fools and his wounded angels affirm just such a wager. Life is love (creative imagination) and absence of love is death.'

There is also this interview of Collins by Fuller from 1987:


James Higham said...

Your artwork is remembered as well, JD.

Paddington said...

I have to disagree, and say that verifiable facts are probably as close to whatever reality is as we will ever attain.