Exultation: Sex, Death and Madness in Eight Surrealist Masterworks
The task of the right eye is to peer into the telescope, while the left eye peers into the microscope. - Leonora Carrington -
The eight artists in the gallery's Modern exhibition, Exultation, demonstrated what would have been expansive worldviews for their times, insatiable curiosity, intense introspection, an unrelenting pursuit of the ecstatic, a romance with madness, unrestrained libido and a preoccupation even with death. Like many of the Modernist painters, they sought modes of expression that explored utopian freedoms, at times through gateways of dystopian social collapse. Situated in a section of the gallery specifically designed for Frey Norris' Modern collections, seminal paintings from the 1930's to 1960's by Leonora Carrington, Paul Delvaux, Frida Kahlo, Wifredo Lam, Wolfgang Paalen, Yves Tanguy, Dorothea Tanning and Remedios Varo complement one another on permanent and floating walls. These pictures vary from abstraction to images ripe with magic, frightening decay and liberated sexual innuendo. A feeling of exultation, a celebration of being alive, of liberation from the everyday and of radical personal freedom comes down through the decades in the images of these beautiful and distinctive canvases.