The medium of Leonora Carrington

A feminist haunting in the contemporary arts

By Catriona McAra

The medium of Leonora Carrington


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-6123-9
  • Pages: 248
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £85.00
  • Published Date: November 2022
  • BIC Category: LITERARY CRITICISM / Modern / 21st Century, LITERARY CRITICISM / Feminist, ART / Women Artists, ART / Individual Artists / Monographs, The arts / Art & design styles: Surrealism & Dada, The arts / Individual artists, art monographs, Literature & literary studies / General, Reference, information & interdisciplinary subjects / Interdisciplinary studies, Art History, Interdisciplinary studies


Before her death, the artist and writer Leonora Carrington (1917-2011) had already garnered a cult following, with numerous creative people making the pilgrimage to meet her at her home in Mexico City. Since then, her fame has only increased. Thinking across contemporary art media, this book demonstrates how Carrington has posthumously become a medium in her own right, critically haunting the creative intellectuals who met or knew her. It explores the work of a remarkable variety of individuals and organisations, including the artists Lucy Skaer, Samantha Sweeting and Lynn Lu, the actress Tilda Swinton, the novelists Chloe Aridjis and Heidi Sopinka and the ensemble Double Edge Theatre. This long-awaited study provides essential reading for both new and established members of the burgeoning Carrington fan club.


'McAra's multiple approaches invite the reader to discover the exciting adventures that paintings, sculptures and narratives offer. Many books, essays and performances take inspiration from Leonora's imagery, as McAra demonstrates. Leonora's art becomes an invitation to meet the inner personae that our culture often ignores and despises.'
Gabriel Weisz Carrington, author of The invisible painting: My memoir of Leonora Carrington

'Carrington, in McAra's perceptive analysis, becomes a powerful embodiment of a surrealist ethics of the present."'
Anna Watz, editor of Surrealist women's writing


1 Archaeology
2 Another maybe
3 Esoteric conceptualism
4 Hibernation
5 Menagerie
6 Edgework


Catriona McAra is Assistant Director, University Collections and Curation at the University of St Andrews

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