Surreal Things-2

Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design

May 9 – September 13, 2009


The Surreal Things Exhibition is included in General Admission except on Wednesday nights when there is a charge of $12.50 per person.

Surreal Things offers a new perspective on the surrealists’ contentious and ambiguous relationship to the commercial fields of design, fashion, advertising, architecture, film and theatre. The exhibition explores how the increasing pressures of burgeoning consumer culture conflicted with surrealism’s first principles. Nonetheless, there was significant creative, cross-fertilization between surrealist artists and designers. The exhibition brings together some of the most extraordinary objects ever created, and will include painting, sculpture, architecture, works on paper, jewellery, ceramics, textiles, furniture, fashion, film and photography.


Introduction by Ghislaine Wood

Ghislaine Wood - Introduction to Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design


Surreal Things Talk With Ghislaine Wood

Surrealism was one of the most influential movements of the twentieth century and had a profound impact on all forms of culture. During the 1930s it escaped the bounds of an avant-garde art movement and transformed the wider worlds of theatre, design, fashion and advertising. This lecture explores how Surrealism evolved from art movement to commercial phenomenon.

Ghislaine Wood is the curator of the exhibition, Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design. In 2003, she was lead curator of the critically acclaimed and popular exhibition, Art Deco, 1910-1939 at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England. Three years earlier, she was deputy curator of Art Nouveau, 1890-1914. She is a member of the V&A’s Research Department.

Ghislaine Wood - Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design



The Surrealists were wild about the cinema. They were seduced by film’s ability to create dreamlike states and liberate minds from the mundane cluthes of reality. Under the Spell pairs Surrealist films – such as the scandalous Dalí-Buñel collaboration Un Chien andalou – with the works of mainstream cinema that inspired their strange adventures. This series is shown in conjunction with the AGO’s Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design exhibition.

Under the Spell begins Friday, May 22, at 7:00pm with the most famous short film of all time, Un Chien andalou, followed by the outrageous L’Âge d’or.

Under the Spell is presented by:

Lead Sponsor for Surreal Things:

Organized by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London,

 Supported by the Department of Canadian Heritage through the Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Program

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