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Surrealism and Magic: Enchanted Modernity

from 2. Oct 2021

The exhibition Surrealism and Magic: Enchanted Modernity is the first large-scale international loan exhibition to focus on the Surrealists’ interest in magic, myth, and esotericism. 

With his Manifesto of Surrealism, published in October 1924, the French writer André Breton founded a literary and artistic movement that soon became the leading international avant-garde. At the center of the Surrealist enterprise lay a reorientation towards the world of the night-dream, the unconscious and the irrational. Numerous artists, who moved in the intellectual orbit of the movement, also immersed themselves in the imaginative world of magic. In their works, they frequently drew on occult symbolism and cultivated the traditional image of the artist’s persona as a magician, seer, and alchemist. The exhibition Surrealism and Magic: Enchanted Modernity is the first large-scale international loan exhibition to focus on the Surrealists’ interest in magic, myth, and esotericism. Chronologically, it ranges from the “metaphysical painting” of Giorgio de Chirico around 1915, through Max Ernst’s iconic painting Attirement of the Bride (1940), to the occult imagery that underpinned the late works of Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo.

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  Max Ernst: Attirement of the Bride, 1940, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice (Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York)

Max Ernst: Attirement of the Bride, 1940, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice (Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York)

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