Meret Oppenheim, ‘Schoolgirl’s Notebook (Le Cahier d’une Écolière) Edition 41/100’, 1973, National Museum of Women in the Arts

Image rights: Courtesy of Lisa Wenger and Martin A. Bühler, Meret Oppenheim Estate, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Thomas Hill, in memory of Rosemary Furtak

About Meret Oppenheim

A central figure in Surrealism, Meret Oppenheim painted dream narratives and impossible juxtapositions of everyday objects to explore female sexuality, identity, and exploitation. She famously posed for Man Ray’s Erotique voilée (1933), instantly becoming an object of romantic idealization to the Surrealists for her seemingly direct and spontaneous access to experiences of the dream world through her youth, charm, and openness. In her best-known works, Oppenheim painted household objects in suggestively erotic arrangements or created haunting assemblages of indeterminate origins, often transforming objects closely associated with feminine domesticity into erotic symbols. Object (1936), a fur-covered cup, saucer, and spoon, became her most iconic work. Through exhibitions and activities amongst the Surrealist circle, Oppenheim was closely associated with Jean Arp, André Breton, and Max Ernst.

German-Swiss, 1913-1985, Charlottenburg, Germany