AI NO DERRIDA

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Kenneth Grant - The Greatest Occultist Of The 20th Century

6 comments:

  1. I take issue with that statement - AOS would be 'The greatest occultist of the 20th century', shirley? After all, Grant wouldn't be half the man he is today without Zos Vel Thanatos.

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  2. damn, my fiendish attempt at subliminally influencing the vote have been foiled...
    but it's actually got me thinking... what's the difference between an occultist and a magician... I would say Spare is more a conjuror/magician and Grant an occultist.
    Where Grant is more of an occult figurehead is with his pulling of all these different systems... Cults Of The Shadow for eg...
    Spare's a better magician definitely imo, along with Dali.
    In fact Grant calls Dali "The greatest magician of the 20th century"... kind of agree on that, along with Ballard (i think he's a magician - power of prophecy, in particular), manifesting the concrete irrational.

    Brian Aldiss describes JGB as 'A grand magician of modern fiction'. I take that literally to be the case.

    The relationship between Spare and Grant is a weird one. I get the feeling they were feeding each other...

    all this said, Grant's books are towards the 2nd and 3rd trilogies are less about magic than magical themselves (necronomicons really)...

    oh i don't know ;)

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  3. Of Grant's work, the only one I've been able to get my hands on is Outside the Circles of Time. I find it endlessly fascinating, despite the rather tedious expositions of gemetria. Grant writes as though he lives in a Borges/Lovecraft short story, which is fascinating enough in and of itself. (Do you anywhere where Grant's books can be purchased for less than an arm an leg?) I recently discovered the intensely occult literature of Gustav Meyrink - his novels The Golem and The Green Face are really extraordinary.

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  4. I actually think that Steffi Grant's drawings have more magick in them than all her husband's rambling books put together.

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  5. Tristan - try Atlantis books, Wadkins or Treadwell's. They might have some of the starfire prints...
    Meyrink - definitely, The Green Face is amazing

    Mythicalbeast777 - KG does really divide folk... Steffi's art is great, It's amazing that she has never had a show in her lifetime (I think that's the case). Zos Speaks (KGs) diaries of his time with AOS, I love, it's really touching.

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  6. Tristan, personally I find that Grant writes as though he's in a Lovecraft pastiche written by Sax Rohmer. I'm in possession of a full complement of Grant's Typhonian Trilogies and can honestly say that they are ALL worth reading, but skip 'Beyond The Mauve Zone' and 'The Ninth Arch' unless you are a full-on dyed-in-the-wool adept. 'The Magickal Revival' was recently reprinted and is still available, and you should be able to pick up 'Outer Gateways' and 'Hecate's Fountain' relatively cheaply if you have a good mooch around.

    Dr. C, fair point now that I think of it, really. Grant would definitely fit my definition of an 'occultist' as opposed to a 'magickian', and I also love Steffi's art. I believe it warrants a book of its own by now, shirley?

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