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In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and the United States Hardcover – January 11, 2012

4.8 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This nice and heavy book (which includes more than 200 works of art) features the kickass work of Mexican and U.S.-based women artists and shows how women used surrealism as a way to explore their subconscious and express their perspectives on issues such as gender and female sexuality - ultimately making surrealism a movement of their own." --BUST Magazine

"For far too long, surrealism has been associated solely with male minds…But in fact, as this powerful new collection proves, female artists in the movement were a powerful force - delving deeply into their own subconscious and dreams…It is a journey, not just through the Americas, but through the unconscious…There is so much to revisit and rediscover here." --Feministing

"In Wonderland… celebrates the work of 48 visionaries, including Lola Alvarez Bravo's dreamy photocollages, Dorothea Tanning's soft sculptures, and iconic paintings by Frida Kahlo." --Elle Décor

"Essential to anyone who has serious interest in surreal and fantastic art." --Locus

"In Wonderland…expands the surrealist canon." --CHOICE

From the Inside Flap

Filled with a wide array of illustrations, this book offers a fresh perspective on surrealism as it spotlights the important role that North American women artists played in the movement.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Prestel USA (January 11, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3791351419
  • ISBN-13: 978-3791351414
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 10.2 x 12.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #538,615 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Maria Elena Buszek, Ph.D. is a scholar, critic, curator, and Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Colorado Denver, where she teaches courses on Modern and contemporary art.

Her recent publications include the books Pin-Up Grrrls: Feminism, Sexuality, Popular Culture and Extra/ordinary: Craft and contemporary art; contributions to the anthologies It's Time for Action (There's No Option): About Feminism; Blaze: Discourse on Art, Women, and Feminism; and Contemporary Artists; catalogue essays for numerous national and international exhibitions; and articles and criticism in such journals as Art in America, Art Journal, Photography Quarterly, and TDR: The Journal of Performance Studies. She has also been a regular contributor to the popular feminist magazine BUST since 1999. Her current book project explores the ties between contemporary activist art and popular music.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Whether or not you can see the exhibit on which this book is based (I wish I could have), I highly recommend the book itself as a welcome addition to the very limited supply of books on women Surrealist artists as a group (I know of only two, Whitney Chadwick's Women Artists and the Surrealist Movement--start with this one--and Angels of Anarchy: Women Artists and Surrealism, edited by Patricia Allmer). The pictures in the book are large, plentiful, and lovely, most in full color, and the essays and brief biographical sketches are informative. Best of all, the book includes a number of interesting artists I'd never heard of, plus works by more familiar figures (Frida Kahlo, Remedios Varo, Leonora Carrington) that I hadn't seen. The essays and pictures bring out the unique inspiration that the landscapes and native cultures of the southwestern United States and Mexico provided to numerous women, both native and expatriate, and show how different artists developed similar themes.
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Format: Hardcover
IN WONDERLAND is due to open at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art this month and promises to be one of the fines exhibits presented by this now formidable institution. The subtitle is revealing: THE SURREALIST ADVENTURES OF WOMEN ARTISTS IN MEXICO AND THE UNITED STATES as this exhibition fills a significant gap in our studies of the Surrealist Art movement; women artists have all but been excluded in the ranks of the Surrealist School. Now, thanks to curator Ilene Susan Fort and to the contributing authors - Maria Buszek, Tere Arcq, Terri Geis and Dawn Ades - that window has been refreshingly opened.

The exhibition as so beautifully designed and presented in this richly colorful and informative book showcases the work of many well-known artists such as Frida Kahlo, Leonora Carrington, Lee Miller, Remedios Vara, Dorothea Tanning and Louise Bourgeois who form only part of the near fifty artists represented. As is widely known, the Surrealist Movement in art has heretofore been the domain of male artists - Jean Arp, Giorgio de Chirico, Salvador Dalí, Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Alberto Giacometti, René Magritte, Joan Miró, Francis Picabia, Man Ray, Yves Tanguy - many of whom objectified women in their paintings, casting them as sexual or symbolic ideals. Conversely, the female artists of the movement delved primarily into their own subconscious and dreams. Included are reproductions and notations and historical data of 48 Mexican and U.S.-based women artists whose contributions to the surrealist movement span more than four decades and whose work was both influential and radical in its own right.

For those preparing to visit this traveling exhibition or who simply want to expand their knowledge of an important period in art, this book is highly recommended. Grady Harp, January 12
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
While the original Surrealists were largely male, sometimes oppressively so for all their brilliance, it's fascinating to see how the women artists have endured as creative forces in the long run. Leonora Carrington was still painting well into her late 90s, and Dorothea Tanning continued to write poetry & memoir up to her death just a month shy of her 102nd birthday. This exhibit catalogue of 48 women & their ongoing life's work is a revelation, with brief biographies of the artists & a generous sampling of their art, which is reproduced in either crystalline black-&-white (in the case of photography & drawings), or in sensuously rich color which seems to saturate the heavy white pages. And while there are some names even the novice will find familiar, such as Frido Kahlo, for the most part these are creators who will either be new to many readers, or else new as artists -- the poet Mina Loy immediately comes to mind. Even better, the most recent works are from the 21st Century, showing how the Surrealist influence has continued to thrive in the hands of younger artists. And while there's a distinctly female approach to much of this work, each artist's unique vision comes through clearly, encompassing feminism but not bounded by it. In the end, this is the pure expression of individual souls who see the world with visionary eyes -- sometimes ablaze with light, sometimes steeped in darkness, but always as something new & fresh & (that Surrealist ideal) Marvelous. Most highly recommended!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great book! Large reproductions of many works by women with whom I was not familiar, as well as some of the better known ones. Very exciting stuff! And some great reading too, but not too much text.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent book on women artists during the Surrealist period. A very inspiring and meaty book I'll refer to again & again.
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When significant members of the Surrealist movement left Europe for Central America and the Carribean to escape the Nazis, magical things and collaborations occurred. This book chronicals a few of them .
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