Leonor Fini: “Theatre of Desire” at the New York Sex Museum
#NEW YORK Leonor Fini’s admirers include Andy Warhol, Madonna, and most recently Maria Grazia Chiuri, Director of the House Dior whose spring 2018 collection was dedicated to the artist.
The New York Sex Museum pays a strong tribute to him until March 4, 2019. Since its opening in 2002, the mission of this New York institution has been to present and transmit the history and evolution of male sexuality through art. Thus she devoted her first American retrospective “Theatre of Desire” to the painter.
“I always imagined that I would have a very different life than the one we had imagined for me, but I realized very early on that I would have to revolt to make this life.” – Leonor Fini
Leonor Fini, an avant-garde and multidisciplinary artist, has always refused to be put in a hut or movement. She categorically refuses to allow her work to be confined to an approach to the question of identity and gender.
And even if she exhibited in large surrealist retrospectives in the 1930s and 1940s, alongside her friends Max Ernst and Salvador Dalí, she rejected the reductive idea of a vision of women as mere muses. Her artistic approach explores masculinity and femininity, domination and submission, eroticism and humour. As his career progresses, his practice evolves and goes far beyond painting to include theatre, ballet, illustrated books and costumes.
If Leonor Fini defends the principle of an identity that is never fixed as an artistic expression, thus rejecting all social conventions, she remains constantly open and the self-portraits she makes throughout her long career present the woman as a warrior, dominatrix and feline goddess, who masters the surrounding nature as well as her lovers.
The scenography, on the two floors of the museum, presents a wide selection of works created between 1930 and the 1980s: paintings, illustrations, drawings and costumes. You can also discover original objects such as the famous perfume bottle “Shocking” created for Elsa Schiaparelli. Bottle that will probably inspire Jean Paul Gauthier for his “Classique” or Kim Kardashian for his fragrance KKW.
In the windows, it is also an opportunity to discover “Juliette” by the Marquis de Sade (secretly printed on the Presses du…Vatican in 1944) or the coveted ones in the auction rooms, illustrations she made in 1962 for Histoire d’O by Pauline Réage. A large selection of photographs and documents from his personal archives testify to his life in Paris and his interventions in living art and the underground scene. “Theatre of Desire” reveals Leonor Fini’s complex and uncompromising personality and his commitment to a lifetime of freedom. This avant-garde figure defies convention, breaks free from taboos with a totally diabolical humour that always invites us to look and think differently.
Leonor Fini: Theatre of Desire 1930-1990
From September 28 to March 4, 2019
233 Fifth Avenue (at 27th Street)
New York, NY 10016
Opening hours Sunday – Thursday: 10:30 – 22:00
Friday and Saturday: 10:30 am – 11:00 pm
(Last ticket sold 1 hour before closing time)
More Contemporary art articles
MORE ARTICLES FOR YOU