1 September 2018 – 2 January 2019
Aargauer Kunsthaus, Aarau
Is there such a thing as Swiss Surrealism? This first major surveyexhibition on the subject answers the question with 400 selected keyworks and surprising new discoveries by some 60 Swiss artists.
After a historical introduction the exhibition shows, in nine atmosphericthemed rooms, how Surrealist achievements and pictorial inventions have shaped art into the present day.
Surrealism – A magical, enticing concept. But what lies behind it? We might
think of the melting clock faces of Salvador Dalí, the dream figures of
René Magritte and the mysterious landscapes of Max Ernst. From the ranks of
Swiss artists Meret Oppenheim’s fur cup is lodged in the collective memory.
Alberto Giacometti, with his oppressive objects and cages, did much to
shape Surrealist sculpture. But ‘Swiss Surrealism’?
The exhibition Surrealism Switzerland includes around 400 sculptures,
paintings, drawings and photographs as well as a video of some 60 artists.
For the first time it is devoted exclusively and comprehensively to the
theme of Surrealism in Switzerland. The exhibition focuses both on the
involvement of Swiss artists in the Surrealist movement founded by André
Breton in 1924 and on the characteristics of this artistic attitude in the
conservative cultural climate in Switzerland between the 1930s and 1950s.
The inclusion of selected positions of subsequent generations also
demonstrates the influence of Surrealism on the development of the post-War
avant-gardes and the still contemporary nature of Surrealist pictorial
inventions and artistic methods.
The exhibition begins with a historical introduction featuring documents
and major key works by the artists represented. Surrealism developed in
Paris in the 1920s in the circle around the author André Breton. Unlike
other avant-garde trends, it was characterised less by a recognisable style
than by an artistic attitude. The intention was to bring repressed
subjects, anxieties, desires and fantasies directly to the surface,
borrowing on Freud’s psychoanalysis and using techniques such as écriture
For further information:
Julia Schallberger, Co-Curator Surrealism Switzerland, Aargauer Kunsthaus,
T +41 (0)62 835 49 70, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Filomena Colecchia, Communication / Media, Aargauer Kunsthaus
T +41 (0)62 835 23 34, E-Mail email@example.com
Peter Fischer, Curator Surrealismus Schweiz,
T +41 (0)79 752 24 12, E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org