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Alex Reid Lefevre Gallery, London


Dating from 1947, the same years Cecil Collins published The Vision of the Fool, a collection of paintings, drawings prefaced by a seminal and highly influential essay on the aims of his art, this melancholy little drawing epitomises the poetic visionary style of his work at this date Collins believed strongly that the subject of a picture and the emotions it aroused were inseparable from the colours and forms it finally took. In this work, of a seemingly sleeping woman, the colour blue, which he saw as the colour of night and repose, is shaped and moulded by a wiry rhythmic pattern of downward drifting lines to create an intense mood of quietness and rest in every part of the image. Yet it is far from being a lethargic or somnolent image; Collins saw art as 'a point of interpretation between worlds, a marriage of the known with the unknown, for it is the unknown which freshens our life' and the sense here is very much one of sleeping, living energies, of enormous vitality.