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on 14 October 2013
I'm a great admirer of British Surrealism, a movement unfairly regarded as inferior to and derivative of the Continental model. I've always been fascinated by the way influences can be twisted and mutated into something new ... in the words of a wonderful manifesto by James S. Adams of musical collective BLK w/ BEAR: "We champion delay and decay ... and misappropriated realignments."
The British Surrealist movement didn't last long officially (but lived on in the work of J.G. Ballard, for instance and bubbles away beneath the surface even now in the art and music of Steven Stapleton and his Nurse With Wound), but for a moment it illuminated this damp little island and left echoes in the work of such figures as Paul Nash and Henry Moore
This very interesting new book, 'On The Thirteenth Stroke of Midnight: Surrealist Poetry in Britain', published by Carcanet Press, contains a wonderful selection of work by a wide group of writers and painters, including some of my favourite (and unjustly obscure) artists such as Ithell Colquhoun, Emmy Bridgwater and Edith Rimmington ... who prove to be as provocative with words as with imagery - outside of the academy, these women were true inheritors of Blake's subversion and spirit. With any luck, it will spark some new interest in a forgotten corner of British culture and some fine artists.
Surrealism in Britain A Short Survey of Surrealism Homotopy to MarieThe Unlimited Dream Company (Paladin Books) Goose of Hermogenes Ithell Colquhoun: Magician Born Of Nature. Revised Edition.
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