“I am not a Surrealist; I am Surrealism. Surrealism is not a party or a label; it is a state of mind, unique, to each his own, that can be affected by no party line, taboo, or morality. It is the total freedom to be and the right to absolute dreaming.” Salvador Dalí’s The Enigma of Wilhelm Tell, 1933, on display in the Collection. #ModernaMuseet#SalvadorDalí
[Sound on] Transformation and the relation to nature are common topics in Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg’s works. In the film ”Turn into Me” (2008) the forest carelessly reclaims the dead body.
We are said to resemble birds. Inversely, the birds in ”The Parade” (2011) seem human in their poses and gestures. But birds, which developed from dinosaurs, have existed long before humans, and connect us to something primordial and frightening.
Like many of her contemporaries, Hilma af Klint was influenced by spiritual movements, especially spiritualism, theosophy and later also anthroposophy. Through her paintings, she sought to understand and share the various dimensions of human existence. Af Klint was convinced that she was channelling a higher plane of consciousness while she was working.
[Sound on!] Three men sporting insignia of the Catholic Church – the ring, the censer, and the purple cope – harass a few young, naked women who literally turn themselves inside out in order to please. The film ”Greed” (2009) reveals the artist’s interest in the Italian director Pier Paolo Pasolini.
The man with his eye closed in Giorgio de Chirico’s The Child’s Brain, 1914, is one of the father figures that began to make their appearance in de Chirico’s paintings after his father’s premature death in 1905. The red ribbon between the pages in the book links the viewer, who is in the position of the painter, to the dead father. A thin but opaque curtain cuts through the pictorial space, as if to mark a distance and inability to make contact.
On display in the Collection. #ModernaMuseet#GiorgiodeChirico
In her stop-motion films Nathalie Djurberg animates using clay. A time-consuming technique where a series of stills give the film movement. Here, Djurberg is working on the film “Snake with a mouth sewn shut, or, This is a Celebration”, which is shown in the current exhibition of Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg. In this film we witness a small child’s abandonment and a mother’s dragon-like physical collapse in a claustrophobic room. The film features fragmented texts rendering desperate cries from them both.
In connection with the exhibition Djurberg and Berg have created a textile print and you can now become a proud owner of this signed and numbered edition through the Friends of Moderna Museet. (More info at modernamuseet.se, link in bio.) #ModernaMuseet#NathalieDjurberg
Amy Nimr (1907–1974) was a painter and writer. In 1943, Nimr’s only son, Micky, was killed by a landmine during the family’s picnic in Wadi Degla. Her paintings following this accident are described as her most surrealist and dark phase. Learn more about Amy Nimr in the exhibition “Art et Liberté: Brytning, krig och surrealism i Egypten (1938–1948)” until 12 August 2018. #ModernaMuseet#AmyNimr
Amy Nimr, Untitled (Anatomical Corpse), 1940
Tora Vega Holmström started this painting in 1913. The woman and child were among a group of Italian guest workers in the Stockholm harbour. There is something sad about them, a sorrow that is emphasised by the greenish tone. Her friend, the poet Rainer Maria Rilke, was in raptures over the painting and wrote of "the child who nevertheless gazes at a foreign world, incomprehensible and unfamiliar." Tora Vega Holmström, Strangers, 1913-1914 in the Collection. #ModernaMuseet#ToraVegaHolmström
[Sound on!] ”Dark Side of the Moon” is set in a forest clearing, where the desires of the characters revolve around a mysterious cabin where only the chosen few are allowed inside. Djurberg uses stop motion, a slow animation method where a series of stills give the illusion of movement. A process without a script in close dialogue with Berg, whose music adds layers of meaning.
Step in to the world of Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg – A journey through mud and confusion with small glimpses of air. On display until 9 September. #ModernaMuseet#NathalieDjurberg#HansBerg
Surrealism was an approach rather than a style. It was a new way of seeing, of looking inwards instead of outwards. Inspired by Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis, the surrealists turned away from rational reality and embraced the irrational hidden sides of the human mind. Yves Tanguy used the secret imagery of dreams. Tanguy’s “Objets. La Tranquillité et l'ennui de l'infini” (Objects. The Tranquility and the Boredom of the Infinite), 1934, is on display in our Collection. #ModernaMuseet#YvesTanguy#Surreal
At the dawn of the Second World War and during Egypt’s colonial rule by the British Empire, Art et Liberté was globally engaged in its defiance of Fascism, Nationalism and Colonialism. The Group played an active role within an international network of surrealist artists. Through their own definition of Surrealism, they achieved a contemporary literary and pictorial language.