In Wonderland: Women Surrealists at LACMA

This looks like it will be a great show!  In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and the United States

Frida Kahlo, Autorretrato con collar de espinas y colibri (Self Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird), 1940, Oil on canvas, Canvas: 30 x 24 in
The Mountain Helen Lundeberg c. 1933 Oil on Celotex Canvas: 48 x 54 in. Framed: 58 x 64 in.


The exhibition includes works in a variety of media dating from 1931 to 1968, and some later examples that demonstrate Surrealism’s influence on the feminist movement. Iconic figures such as Louise Bourgeois, Leonora Carrington, Frida Kahlo, Lee Miller, Kay Sage, Dorothea Tanning, and Remedios Varo are represented, along with lesser known or newly discovered practitioners.

January 29, 2012–May 6, 2012

Death of the Artists

Louise Bourgeois, Maman 1999, bronze, London

Sigmar Polke, Der Ziegenwagen 1992, synthetic poymer paint on printed fabric

In the past month two extraordinary artists passed away. Both French-American sculptor Louise Bourgeois and German painter and photographer Sigmar Polke were active during the the height of the modernist period of the last century as well as working into the 21st and staying current and ageless despite the lapse of time. These two were also very inspirational to me personally. They have vast bodies of work that explore many different ways of making and artistic styles without remaining static.

I remember my initial fascination when seeing Bourgeois work and feeling for her triumphant stance as a woman artist at a time when men dominated the field. I spent time sitting under her gigantic, imposing, and maternal bronze spider outside the Kemper Museum of Art in Kansas City that was across the street from my art school studio and dorm. When I studied in NYC in 2004 I missed an amazing chance to visit Bourgeois studio and still regret it! She succumbed to heart failure (25 December 1911 – 31 May 2010). Rest in peace Spiderwoman.

In the midst of researching to write a grad school paper on artist appropriation of media. Polke’s huge paintings explored process and surface. Often using a transparent surface so one sees the stretcher frame through the painting. He also employed Ben-day dots, silk screening, resins, and patterned textiles. His paintings explored themes of German history and postwar themes as well. Polke passed away of cancer (13 February 1941 – 10 June 2010).Rest in Peace Polke.

Louise Bourgeois, 1990, with her sculpture, Eye to Eye.