Cecil Collins
Hymn 1953

Artwork details

Cecil Collins 1908–1989
Date 1953
Medium Oil paint on board
Dimensions Support: 1226 x 1530 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Friends of the Tate Gallery 1961
Not on display

Display caption

Collins’s paintings often present visions of a transcendental world. This picture was originally called Hymn to Death. It is both ‘a vision of Death as a moment of Transfiguration’ and one of salvation.

The chrysalis form lying on the segmented structure may be considered either as a dead or sleeping body. The celestial aura in the sky may be the ascending spirit of the body at the moment of its death. However, it could be an angelic presence come to wake the sleeping body, itself a metaphor for the modern, material world.

September 2004

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