La Femme Surréaliste

Meret Oppenheim

“She is a living example of the ancient theorem The Woman is a Sandwich Covered With White Marble. ” (Max Ernst)

Leonor Fini

In Paris she became a legend almost overnight. When one of the Surrealists saw a painting of hers in a Paris gallery in 1936 and sought out its creator, she arranged a rendezvous in a local cafe and arrived dressed in a cardinal’s scarlet robes, which she had purchased in a clothing store specializing in clerical vestments. “I liked the sacreligious nature of dressing as a priest,” she later explained, “and the experience of being a woman and wearing the clothes of a man who would never know a woman’s body.”
Whitney Chadwick, Women Artists and the Surrealist Movement

Leonor was in the doorway. To illumihate her features a torch was held by a black, a black man of wood…. I dared, for an instant, to eye her fully. Her hair stood about her face like a blue mane…. Not a beautiful woman; her parts did not fit well together; head of a lioness, mind of a man, bust of a woman, torso of a child, grace of an angel and discourse of the devil. While her eyes were her arresting feature, large and deep black, her allure was an ability to dominate her misfitted parts so that they merged into whatever shape her fantasy wished to present from one moment to the next… She was dressed in rags, or rather a gorgeous robe deliberately torn.
Julian Levy, Memoir of an Art Gallery

26 portraits of surrealistic women.

Music by Jocelyn Pook, Dionysus, and Red Song.


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