By Holly Baggett
Author, artist, long island gallery proprietor, and co-editor of the Little evaluate, Jane Heap was once probably the most dynamic figures of the overseas avant garde, making a lifestyles that outlined the "modernist adventure" as a syncretic one. intentionally looking a low profile all through her existence, Heap has pissed off many students attracted to her own existence and the terribly very important interval during which she lived. via her correspondence, Heap the following unearths her intimate self in addition to her extra public, inventive relationships with the various legends of contemporary artwork, literature, and spirituality. Focusing totally on the voluminous letters written through Heap to Florence Reynolds, the correspondence incorporated during this quantity spans the years from 1908-1949, incorporating extra illuminating letters to Reynolds from different major figures in Heap's lifestyles. Heap's letters exhibit the unconventional transformation of a dreamy, younger Midwestern girl right into a forceful, refined arbiter of overseas modernism and supply infrequent perception into the fight for lesbian identification and group throughout the inter-war interval. They aspect her eventual abandonment of artwork within the look for the transcendent within the seductive and esoteric mysticism of George Gurdjieff. Holly Baggett's accompanying essay extra highlights the confidence of Jane Heap's aesthetics and lifestyles.
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Extra resources for Dear Tiny Heart : The Letters of Jane Heap and Florence Reynolds
Good-night my Tiny Heart—with all love from your, Jane [Postmarked August 26, 1908] Tiny Heart mine— Late yesterday your letter came it was not just a letter it was so much to me I can not tell—what your love, your faith and your understanding are to me I can never tell you. I do not believe that I myself know, how much they mean to me now. No one ever understood before as you have done and do. Perhaps we all fell like foreigners and long for someone to talk our language. How I have longed for someone to understand.
Gurdjieff taught gender and sexuality were divided into male and female as a reﬂection of nature’s symmetry. It was one example of cosmological balance that could be seen in every level of the universe. In Gurdjieff’s scheme of human creation, the male is active and positive, the female 18 • Introduction negative and passive, and homosexuality an aberration in the natural order of the universe. Why would Heap, Anderson, Reynolds, Leblanc, Solano, and Hulme embrace such a philosophy? In none of their accounts of Gurdjieff, whether in autobiographies, in Anderson’s book The Unknowable Gurdjieff, in Heap’s study-group notes, or in their personal correspondence, is there a reference to issues of sexuality in his teaching.
As new friends and lovers entered their lives—Anderson, Leblanc, Solano, Flanner, Hulme, and 20 • Introduction Champcommunal—they were interconnected across continents and decades. Heap, who was once bitter about Anderson and Leblanc, wrote solicitous and even tender letters to Leblanc as she was dying. When Anderson ﬁnally made it to the United States after Leblanc’s death in 1942, Flanner, Hulme, and Solano were there to meet her at the dock. 30 Heap’s life and work, I would argue, was a long search for synthesis, an effort to reconcile the competing interests of creativity, mysticism, and sexuality.