Partner event

Leonora Carrington ‘Magical Tales’ at The Museum of Modern Art, Mexico

Museum of Modern Art in Mexico City

West Dean College of Art and Conservation is proud to support the first major Leonora Carrington retrospective to be exhibited in Mexico in the 21st Century. The College has loaned Carrington's celebrated painting, The House Opposite, a stunning work from 1945 purchased directly from the artist by College founder Edward James. This is the first time the painting has been exhibited in Mexico since it was brought to the UK in the early 1960s.

The exhibition, Magical Tales, is hosted by the Museum of Modern Art in Mexico City, and runs from 21 April until 23 September 2018. It celebrates Carrington's artistic legacy and is the first exhibition in Mexico to explore her work from a multidisciplinary perspective. The works on display bring together different facets of the artist's oeuvre, including painting, sculpture and writing, as well as her involvement with theatre and film.

The curatorial approach of the exhibition combines a chronological journey with thematic analysis. Following an introduction to Carrington's youth in England and France, where she first became involved with the Surrealist group, the show follows the artist into exile, first in New York and then in Mexico. Having arrived in 1942, Carrington would live in Mexico, almost without interruption, until her death in 2011.

The exhibition identifies recurring themes in Carrington's work, such as the White Goddess, symbol of feminine power, and a portrayal of animals that reflects the artist's respect for nature. Another recurrent theme is a re-working of religious and mythical motifs, together with the world of magic and the occult, often used by the artist as a means to portray the evolution of consciousness.

Magical Tales brings together over 220 works from collections around the world, including easel and mural paintings, graphics, drawings, sculptures, masks and stage designs, textiles, photographs, documents, books and personal objects. A fully illustrated catalogue, including images from the Edward James Archive, will be available throughout the exhibition.

Magical Tales is presented in collaboration with the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, in co-production with the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey, and with the generous support of the Leonora Carrington AC Foundation.

The Magical World of the Mayas 1964 Estate of Leonora Carrington
Leonora Carrington ‘The House Opposite’ 1945. West Dean College, part of the Edward James Foundation.
Carrington's 'Green Tea' © Estate of Leonora Carrington ARS, NY and DACS