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Elizabeth in a Blue Dress
© Tate. Photo credit: Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council

Elizabeth in a Blue Dress 1931

Cecil Collins (1908–1989)

Calderdale Metropolitan Borough Council

British painter of visionary subjects, born in Plymouth. He studied at Plymouth School of Art, 1923–7, and at the *Royal College of Art, 1927–31. In 1936 he took part in the International *Surrealist Exhibition in London, but he quickly repudiated Surrealism. He had a mystical outlook and was influenced by the prophetic writings of William Blake and by the American artist Mark *Tobey, who introduced him to the Baha'i religion and to the art and philosophy of the Far East (Tobey was artist-in-residence at Dartington Hall, a progressive school in Devon, 1931–8, and Collins taught there, 1939–43).

Text source: A Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art (Oxford University Press)


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