Monday, April 30, 2012

Women in Wonderland

I was finally able to go and experience the exhibit LACMA has titled In Wonderland.
Of course, my main motivation for attending was the fact the there are multiple works of Frida Kahlo in exhibition, but I was pleasantly surprised with the work of other surrealist women artists. Frida famously said, she "didn't paint [her] dreams of nightmares, but [her] own reality," and the exhibit was exactly that: the reality of the women who filled those canvases. It was magical, wonderful and disturbing at the same time.
The exhibit was subdivided into different categories which showcased the view, so to speak, these women had regarding themselves (self portraits), their bodies, personality, family, politics, and art itself. In being so, we had an insight into different parts of the artists' realities and how they reconcile with the whole of what the reality -as viewed by the outside world- of those women was at the time their work was created. In that same manner, it was rather intriguing to observe how their own views in diverse topics were portrayed. Certainly, the interpretation of their work is subjective, thus it might be more appropriate to describe the reactions those paintings cause in the spectator. But that would completely defeat the purpose of the art. Circular argument.
The absence of the male figure in their work was notable and reason for remark when it was present. It is important because these women viewed themselves not as weaklings who needed men, but as strong women who chose to have a man by their side simply because they could do so. With that said, I was surprised with the absence of a subdivision with love as a topic.
Finally, it is also worthy of note, that there were multiple works by other artists which were inspired by Frida and the relationships she had with those artists.

Images of some of the paintings in the exhibition below...
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Frida Kahlo is obviously the headliner! Photobucket

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The artists
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Dorothea Tanning, Birthday 1942 Photobucket

Frida Kahlo, The Two Fridas 1939 Photobucket

Frida Kahlo, Self Portrait with Monkeys Photobucket

Gerrie Carson, Torso Interior 1946 Photobucket 

Loren Maciver, The Poet 1940 Photobucket

 Remedios Varo, Celestial Pablum 1958 Photobucket 

Gertrude Abercrombie, The Courtship 1949 Photobucket

Frida Kahlo, Frieda and Diego Rivera 1939 Photobucket

Jacqueline Lamba, Mad Love 1944Photobucket

Remedios Varo, Harmony 1956Photobucket

My favorite Frida painting!
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xo,R
©2012 p.s. I wish MoMa LA would do an exhibit like MoMa SF did years ago of only Frida's work.

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xo,R