Archive for Surrealism

Leonora Carrington: The Celtic Surrealist, Dublin

Posted in Art, Dublin with tags , , , , on November 5, 2013 by mysearchformagic

I have always made it my rule to only blog about places that I have actually visited myself, or exhibitions that I have viewed in person, but this week it is time to break that rule. After all, I will make any excuse to include some paintings by one of my favourite artists, Leonora Carrington.

Leonora Carrington, Ulu's Pants, 1952, Oil and tempera on panel, 55 x 91 cm, Private Collection, © Estate of Leonora Carrington / ARS

Leonora Carrington, Ulu’s Pants, 1952, Oil and tempera on panel, 55 x 91 cm, Private Collection, © Estate of Leonora Carrington / ARS

These works are currently being shown in Dublin, and are featured in Carrington’s first major retrospective in Ireland. I can only dream of going over there myself to see it, particularly as it includes her masterpiece The Giantess, but this time it just isn’t going to happen.

The Giantess, 1947,Tempera on wood panel, 117x68cm,collection of Miguel Escobedo

The Giantess, 1947, Tempera on wood panel, 117x68cm, collection of Miguel Escobedo

Still, I can always dream. And of course, if you find yourself in Dublin before the end of January then you have to visit the Irish Museum of Modern Art and let me know just what I am missing!

More details about Leonora Carrington: The Irish Surrealist can be found here


The Ancestor, Leonora Carrington

Posted in Art, Ghosts with tags , , , , , on June 11, 2013 by mysearchformagic
The Ancestor, Leonora Carrington 1968

The Ancestor, Leonora Carrington 1968

I love the work of Leonora Carrington. It is always strange, often unsettling and unfailingly magical. Her life story is intriguing too; brought up in a grand family in the 1920s and 30s, she was expelled from two schools before discovering a passion for art. Her relationship with Surrealist Max Ernst, who left his wife to be with Carrington in Paris, scandalised society and horrified her relations, who promptly disowned her. Ernst was forced to flee from the Nazis following the outbreak of World War Two, soon afterwards Carrington had a breakdown. She eventually ended up in Mexico, where she was to spend the rest of her long life painting wonderful images such as The Ancestor and Temple of the World, and where she is still viewed as a national treasure. Leonora Carrington ended up outliving most of her Surrealist contemporaries, and finally passed away at the ripe old age of ninety four in 2011. The subjects of her paintings are always obscure, but that is pretty much the point; indeed Carrington was often disparaging of any attempts to ‘decipher’ or ‘intellectualise’ her art.

Her 1976 novel The Hearing Trumpet is hilariously bizarre and well worth a read. But then I should probably save that magical little gem for another day…