catalog

Well-known member
Ive just been reading this blog post which collects a few quotes from some of her essays, about creating automatic drawings and paintings


Love this:

“At the time of a recent house-removal I lay in bed looking at a plaster wall seamed with cracks. It was the day before I was due to move and I thought after today I shall no longer see these marvellous cracks, indeed, no one will, because they will be obliterated by redecoration. So… I sprang out of bed, glued some large sheets of tracing-paper together, fastened them to the wall, and made a careful tracing of the cracks: this has since become a large mural, Giantesses Undressing to Bathe. Previously I had found the inspiration of another picture, Autumnal Equinox, in the artificial wood-graining of a painted door. In both these processes, the basic stain was discovered and recorded, but not directly made, by myself: so the process involved was a combination of automatism and the ‘found-object.”

I just made a few quick blot/eyes closed paintings as suggested by her techniques. I might try doing some tracings/frottage of the next bit of detritus i find on the canalside.
 

WashYourHands

Well-known member
@catalog Colquhoun was one of my gateway drugs into landscape studies. I know Cornwall gets a lot of attention because of tourism, Afx, Poldark and that cunt R Stein, but she opened its sites up like a psycho-geographical text. Same with Ireland. Having spent so much time around Tara growing up, it was her books that lit the fuse to explore what these places were about. If she wasn’t so endearingly curious, I’d never have got the bug too.
 

Simon silverdollarcircle

Well-known member
Gysin needs a big art book and retrospective I think. fuck knows where the paintings are now though.

Hilma af Klint (has been exhibited lately I think)
Have you seen the recent film about her? It's good. She wrote into her will that her paintings can never be sold so her family still has the complete collection. There was a show at the serpentine a few years back.
 

catalog

Well-known member
@catalog Colquhoun was one of my gateway drugs into landscape studies. I know Cornwall gets a lot of attention because of tourism, Afx, Poldark and that cunt R Stein, but she opened its sites up like a psycho-geographical text. Same with Ireland. Having spent so much time around Tara growing up, it was her books that lit the fuse to explore what these places were about. If she wasn’t so endearingly curious, I’d never have got the bug too.
Only vaguely aware of her from a reallygood exhibition that linder (sterling, most famous for doing some of the buzzcocks sleeves) curated a couple of years ago at the Nottingham contemporary, which had some of her paintings and also a few pieces by Penny Slinger.

Just googling around now and saw that she lived in Cornwall.
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
Peter Redgrove should also go on the list, partner of Penny Slinger. They wrote a book about menstruation, The Wise Wound. I'm a huge fan of his The Black Goddess. Both of those books are v well researched, and also contain techniques for producing/exploring "occult" effects. It's come out since his death how much Redgrove's "dirt mysticism" was driven by his own fetishes. Wasn't evident to me when I read TBG but it makes one see it in a new light.
 

kumar

Well-known member
i cant really remember the phil baker book too well but i agree with danny about him not giving any credit to the madcap ravings. although they do include some snippets and i tried to print out and read the book of pleasure a while ago and just thought, austin osman spare me.

whats weird about the biography is that he seems to live for like 200 years, it starts off and hes some velvet cloaked wretch communing with the nether under a gas lamp and then by the end of his life hes smoking fags in a post war council flat or something. that generation of children who grew up alongside domestic electricity is bizarre.

his drawings are amazing of course but i mainly remember him going on for ages about the "old crones" he used to fiddle about with
 

kumar

Well-known member
danny if you could, what are some of the things you got out of the writings? people are understandably always reticent to talk about their own magic but i couldn't get into his prose at all, i dont know anything about crowley or the context but it felt off putting
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
i cant really remember the phil baker book too well but i agree with danny about him not giving any credit to the madcap ravings. although they do include some snippets and i tried to print out and read the book of pleasure a while ago and just thought, austin osman spare me.

whats weird about the biography is that he seems to live for like 200 years, it starts off and hes some velvet cloaked wretch communing with the nether under a gas lamp and then by the end of his life hes smoking fags in a post war council flat or something. that generation of children who grew up alongside domestic electricity is bizarre.
There is this whole "pull yourself up by your own bootstraps" pre-welfare state vibe in the Grant piece I mentioned above. It taps into Spare's independence and self-reliance in the context of reading about him.

There is a translation of The Book of Pleasure "into English" if you can't be doing with the language. Seems like cheating to me. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pleasure-Plain-English-Austin-Spare-ebook/dp/B00K1HRPS2
 

catalog

Well-known member
Had no idea about the Slinger redgrove connection, I remember you telling us about redgrove in another thread Danny and I briefly looked into him but never read the black goddess
 

DannyL

Wild Horses
The poetry is great as well though perhaps less so when you realise how much rests on his obsessions. Haven't read him for a while - the factual stuff 0 so it might have dated for me, but I'm not sure.
 

catalog

Well-known member
austin osman spare me.

LOL.

I'll make this a tag for the thread now.

I've gotta say, I'm not really into the occult side of things. It's where I tend to stop.

I have done a couple of experiments with making sigils, as a way of changing text into drawings, but any of the stuff dealing with the various practices, I tend to lose interest at that point.

But some of the art is truly amazing and when you thread it back to people like Blake and so on, it's all very seductive, you do start to think that people are deconstructing themselves in order to sense things in new ways, which then leads to all the incredible drawings, writings etc.
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
The occult is a kind of pattern. You discover it, are blown off course into it, and land on it. It's real and undeniable and hugely powerful. You can allow yourself to be captured by it. These are narrative patterns models frames which exist beyond us and we can submit to them
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
If you live the life of the imagination they are there, like religion. They make sense of the world. They're massively powerful and compelling. I don't know what the correct path of action is. When you discover the reality of them.
 
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