The Art Fund is appealing to the public to raise £3.5 million in order to save Derek Jarman’s former home and garden in Kent. The money raised will establish a permanently funded programme to conserve and maintain the building and its contents for the future.
The former Victorian fisherman’s house where Derek Jarman lived and created – Prospect Cottage in Kent – nourished his artistic and film inspiration. It was in this very location that Jarman wrote Modern Nature and filmed The Garden starring Tilda Swinton. Today’s it’s at risk of disappearing.
“Derek — memorably — said that he would prefer his works after his death to evaporate and disappear. For what it’s worth, and in honour of the supremely contrary nature of my friend, I feel fully confident that he would be extremely enthusiastic about the generosity of this vision for the continuance of the life of his beloved Prospect Cottage as a possibility for future artists, thinkers, activists, gardeners to gain from it the practical and spiritual nourishment it lent him and for which he was — and is — eternally grateful.” Tilda Swinton said.
Jarman had left the cottage to his partner Keith Collins, who died in 2018. Since then, it has been threatened to be sold privately, which many fear would end in a loss of its artefacts, spirit and legacy.