Social Surrealism and the Exploration of Identity

April 22 – June 24, 2023



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The works of Mika Rottenberg and Luis Gispert use a heightened sense of reality to explore ideas of class, gender, and identity. Surrealist at times, their photography and video installations are both filled with exuberant iconography and highly choreographed––every element is carefully orchestrated, from the extravagant outfits to the upscale mise-en-scène and the subjects’ aggressive and theatrical gestures. Their works draw from Social Surrealism, a movement which borrows from European surrealist techniques of the 1920s and 30s to provide social commentary and criticism. The surrealist art movement of the early twentieth century challenged the status-quo and explored new understandings of the unconscious. The rise of revolutionary thinking and liberation of the mind and artistic expression also turned to social and political activism. Rottenberg and Gispert explore similar ideas through the lens of the Latinx experience of contemporary capitalism.

A Space for Dialogue is a student-curated exhibition program that began in 2001. Hood Museum of Art interns create an installation drawn from the museum's permanent collection by engaging with every aspect of curation, from doing research and selecting objects, to choosing frames and a wall color, to planning a layout and writing labels and a brochure, to giving a public talk. There have been over 100 A Space for Dialogue exhibitions on a wide variety of themes.

A Space for Dialogue: Fresh Perspectives on the Permanent Collection from Dartmouth’s Students, founded with support from the Class of 1948, is made possible with generous endowments from the Class of 1967, Bonnie and Richard Reiss Jr. ’66, and Pamela J. Joyner ’79.

Exhibition Curator

Paulina Marinkovic Camacho '23

Related Publications

Exhibition subject: A Space for Dialogue