Leonora Carrington -- The Movie -- The Surrealist -- The Writer

The Giantess by Leonora Carrington
"Leonora Carrington (1917-2011) escaped a stultifying Lancashire childhood to run off with Max Ernst and hang out with Picasso and André Breton in 1930s Paris. She fled the Nazis, escaped from a psychiatric hospital in Spain and became a national treasure in Mexico. What happened to one of Britain's finest - and neglected - surrealists?" Here's a compelling video with footage of a young Carrington and an interview with the older Carrington. The more I learn about her, the more I want to know. Here's another piece I did about her that shows more of her work and a bit of biography.

Carrington painted and wrote in a way that seems unprecedented. She states that the only person in her family that painted was her mother who would decorate biscuit tins for jumble sales. A few of her paintings are in the art museum in Dublin and more at West Dean College in West Sussex, former home of Eduard James. James, Carrington's patron,  advocated strongly for her work and she was part of a 1947 surrealist show in the Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York.

The Inn of the Dawn of the Horse, 1939


  1. Leonora Carrington's dream like tale of Marian, a plucky ninety-five year old, straddles the boundary between mad fantasy and insightful social commentary. Far from being a dry philosophical tome, it is a quick and thoroughly pleasurable read, yet it addresses issues of female identity with imagery that has become part of a sort of neofeminist canon. The image of the wolf sister and particularly the discovery of the Queen Bee will resonate with anyone who is interested in women's spirituality or related studies. The best thing about this book, however, is that it is so fantastically engaging that people of many ages and backgrounds will enjoy it thoroughly.


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