You won't believe this but Beryl Cook is finally in an exhibition at the Tate Britain! Remember back in 2008 when I interviewed you and asked you about the fact that Beryl Cook was excluded from the Tate, though her work is very popular with the British public. Do you think its just a coincidence that she is finally included in the high art establishment now that she is dead?
It could also be due to the fact that the Tate curators have put together a noteworthy exhibition, "Rude Britannia: British Comic Art" and finally Beryl Cook's paintings work within the exhibitions brightly colored walls. I can tell you that there are some people in the Tate that are moving in a highly progressive curatorial direction and giving recognition to artists and movements who have in the past been considered too low brow. I mean, what is taste anyway? And why bother with it?
Jackie, you have obviously recognized Beryl Cook's talents for years before she was critically cool and kudos to you that your LA home is completely covered in Beryl Cook paintings. We can see your exquisite collection clearly in this picture and in this picture. Well, Jackie, it's only going to be a matter of time before the Tate Britain is contacting you to borrow some of your collection for the overdue Beryl Cook Retrospective!
(top) Ladies' Night (Ivor Dickie), 1981 (bottom) Anyone for a Whipping, 1972
(Excerpt from the Jackie Collins interview, 2008. Read full interview here)
Sarah Baker: Thepainter Beryl Cook died recently I know she’s your favorite artist andthat you own a lot of her work. I read in the obituary that she wascontinually rejected from the Tate and other contemporary high artestablishments in London though she was very commercially successful.What do you think about being respected by the elite critical networkverses reaching a broader audience?
Jackie Collins:I think its bullshit. I am a popular culture junky. I love everythingabout it. I love popular television shows, popular movies, popularmusic. All this about you know, ‘you’ve got to love opera,’ and ‘you’vegot to love ballet,’ its fine for some people, good for them! I don’tcriticize them for it. Yet you know, my books which -I know- are gonnabe around in 100 years. People go, ‘it’s just flash and trash’ youknow, and it’s not. It’s saying a very important message to women,which is; you can be stronger, don’t let the double standard get youdown. I’ve hit the double standard on its head and that’s what I’vealways wanted to do.