Remedios Varo. The Juggler (The Magician). 1956

Remedios Varo The Juggler (The Magician) 1956

  • MoMA, Floor 5, 517 The Alfred H. Barr, Jr. Galleries

This painting’s titular juggler (or magician) stands on the platform of a carnivalesque cart filled with fantastical objects and animals. He performs before seemingly identical figures robed in a single gray cloak. To produce this composition, Varo worked in the manner of early Renaissance masters: she transposed preparatory drawings onto a gesso-primed panel which had been scratched to give it texture. She also deployed decalcomania, a technique favored by the Surrealists in which materials such as paper or aluminum foil are pressed onto wet paint to transfer a pattern that may be embellished. Its atmospheric effects can be seen in the magician’s garments and in the background trees.

Gallery label from 2019
Medium
Oil and inlaid mother of pearl on board
Dimensions
35 13/16 × 48 1/16" (91 × 122 cm)
Credit
Gift of Joan H. Tisch (by exchange)
Object number
736.2018
Department
Painting and Sculpture

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