MC

Marjorie Cameron

Marjorie Cameron Parsons Kimmel (April 23, 1922 – June 24, 1995), who professionally used the mononym Cameron, was an American artist, poet, actress and occultist. A follower of Thelema, the new religious movement established by the English occultist Aleister Crowley, she was married to rocket pioneer and fellow Thelemite Jack Parsons. Born in Belle Plaine, Iowa, Cameron volunteered for service in the United States Navy during the Second World War, after which she settled in Pasadena, California. There she met Parsons, who believed her to be the "elemental" woman that he had invoked in the early stages of a series of sex magic rituals called the Babalon Working. They entered into a relationship and were married in 1946. Their relationship was often strained, although Parsons sparked her involvement in Thelema and occultism. After Parsons' death in an explosion at their home in 1952, Cameron came to suspect that her husband had been assassinated and began rituals to communicate with his spirit. Moving to Beaumont, she established a multi-racial occult group called The Children, which dedicated itself to sex magic rituals with the intent of producing mixed-race "moon children" who would be devoted to the god Horus. The group soon dissolved, largely because many of its members became concerned by Cameron's increasingly apocalyptic predictions. Returning to Los Angeles, Cameron befriended the socialite Samson De Brier and established herself within the city's avant-garde artistic community. Among her friends were the filmmakers Curtis Harrington and Kenneth Anger. She appeared in two of Harrington's films, The Wormwood Star and Night Tide, as well as in Anger's film Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome. In later years, she made appearances in art-house films created by John Chamberlain and Chick Strand. Rarely remaining in one place for long, during the 1950s and 1960s she lived in Joshua Tree, San Francisco and Santa Fe. In 1955, she gave birth to a daughter, Crystal Eve Kimmel. Although intermittent health problems prevented her from working, her art and poetry resulted in several exhibitions. From the late 1970s until her death from cancer in 1995, Cameron lived in a bungalow in West Hollywood, where she raised her daughter and grandchildren, pursued her interests in esotericism, and produced artwork and poetry. Cameron's recognition as an artist increased after her death, when her paintings made appearances in exhibitions across the U.S. As a result of increased attention on Parsons, Cameron's life also gained greater coverage in the early 2000s. In 2006, the Cameron–Parsons Foundation was created to preserve and promote her work, and in 2011 a biography of Cameron written by Spencer Kansa was published.
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