Some background

videos + essays

Link to the MoMA's website

André Masson, <em>Battle of Fishes</em>
André Masson, Battle of Fishes

The Surrealist interest in chance, subconscious creativity, and metamorphosis of forms can be seen in Masson's Battle of Fishes

Rhod Rothfuss, <em>Yellow Quadrangle</em>
Rhod Rothfuss, Yellow Quadrangle

Rothfuss, an important voice in Latin American modernism, rejects recognizable forms by breaking the frame

Amelia Peláez del Casal, <em>Fishes</em>
Amelia Peláez del Casal, Fishes

In Fishes, Peláez turned to the domestic sphere to explore her modern Cuban identity soon after her return to Havana from Paris in 1934.

Meret Oppenheim, <em>Object</em> (Fur-covered cup, saucer, and spoon)
Meret Oppenheim, Object (Fur-covered cup, saucer, and spoon)

This furry tea service was a touchstone for Surrealism, but the artist was a victim of her own success.

Joaquín Torres-García, <em>Composition</em>
Joaquín Torres-García, Composition

A house, a boat, an arrow, a clock—Torres-García attempts to humanize modern art with universal symbols

Robert Rauschenberg, <em>Signs</em>
Robert Rauschenberg, Signs

Rauschenberg's Signs is a montage of iconic symbols of 1960s culture

Martín Chambi, <em>Juan de la Cruz Sihuana, Cuzco Studio</em>
Martín Chambi, Juan de la Cruz Sihuana, Cuzco Studio

This photograph of Sihuana is a sensitive portrait of an Indigenous Peruvian man in traditional dress.

Gertrud Arndt, <em>Self-Portrait with Veil</em>
Gertrud Arndt, Self-Portrait with Veil

Arndt’s choice to pose among so many textures, clothes, and props suggests she was aware of the power of photography to interrogate gender roles.

Gino Severini, <em>Dynamic Hieroglyph of the Bal Tabarin</em>
Gino Severini, Dynamic Hieroglyph of the Bal Tabarin

Severini and Boccioni use brilliant colors, abstraction, fragmentation and repetition of forms to create a vibrant whirling energy.

Umberto Boccioni and the Futurist City
Umberto Boccioni and the Futurist City

The Futurists called for the destruction of museums, libraries, and cultural monuments and glorified modern technology and the speed of automobiles, trains, and airplanes.

Why Is This Woman in the Jungle? Henri Rousseau’s <em>The Dream</em>
Why Is This Woman in the Jungle? Henri Rousseau’s The Dream

Artist Henri Rousseau painted The Dream in 1910, and its imagery of a woman lounging on a sofa in the jungle was as surreal then as it is today.

Pablo Picasso, <em>The Three Musicians</em>
Pablo Picasso, The Three Musicians

Three Musicians looks like a collage made from cut out pieces of colored paper — but it is an oil painting.