ICE Public Event: 30th June 2017

Leonora Carrington Centenary Symposium

Festival of Ideas event icon
30th June 2017
9am at Edge Hill University, UK

Watch videos of the symposium here:

  1. keynote speaker Dr Catriona McAra, Leeds College of Art
  2. Panel 1 – ‘Moving from Down Below’ 
  3. ‘Imaginarium’ Dance Performance 
  4. Panel 2 – ‘Leonora Carrington in recent Spanish Scholarship’
  5. Hearing Trumpet’ Performance
  6. Panel 3 – ‘Hybrids and Translation’
  7. Gabriel Weisz Carrington In Conversation
  8. Joanna Moorhead In Conversation

The Leonora Carrington Centenary Symposium will celebrate and bring into discussion the work and legacy of Lancastrian-born Surrealist artist Leonora Carrington (1917-2011).  This timely event forms part of the existing body of research and creative practice that has already emanated from across departments at Edge Hill University, including Film Scholarship (Professor Roger Shannon), Creative Writing (Professor Ailsa Cox), and Dance Performance and Choreography (James Hewison and Michelle Man). We now call upon artists and scholars from a range of disciplines to share research and creative practice that explores Carrington’s work as an artist, a theatre and film collaborator, and writer.

Acknowledging recent scholarly interest in Carrington’s life and work (Dawn Ades, Susan Alberth, Chloe Aridjis, Catriona McAra, Ara Merjian, Joanna Moorhead, Marina Warner) this event wishes to extend the legacy of this British-Mexican artist who gained a stellar reputation in her adopted country, whilst remaining arguably “one of Britain’s finest – and neglected – surrealists” (James, 1975). Carrington was reluctant to analyse her artwork, insisting, “I warn you I refuse to be an object”. In light of this, when mapping Carrington’s legacy, we approach this task through a lens of give and return that the artist musingly offers in her 1965 Jezzamathatics, “I was decubing the root of a Hyperbollick Symposium…when the latent metamorphosis blurted the great unexpected shriek into something between a squeak and a smile. IT GAVE, so to speak, in order to return.”

The symposium will feature keynote speaker Dr Catriona McAra from Leeds College of Art, whose co-edited book is published in Spring 2017 (‘Leonora Carrington and the International Avant Garde’; editors, Jonathan P. Eburne, Catriona McAra; Manchester University Press; 2017).

Guest Speaker, Joanna Moorhead, cousin of Leonora, will discuss her new book, ‘The Surreal Life of Leonora Carrington’ (Little Brown, 2017).

The Centenary Symposium will also welcome from Mexico City Gabriel Weisz Carrington, Leonora’s son, as Guest International Speaker. Gabriel will discuss Leonora’s work ‘in conversation’.

New films about Leonora Carrington will also be screened – ‘The Lost Surrealist‘ (for BBC directed by Teresa Griffiths), and Josh Appignanesi’s ‘Female Human Animal‘ starring novelist/curator Chloe Aridjis. Haunted by Leonora Carrington. Prod: Jacqui Davies.’

The Leonora Carrington Centenary Symposium seeks to offer a space for discussion, engagement and debate.  The event will take place at Edge Hill University’s Ormskirk Campus, UK.

Date: Friday 30th June 2017

8.45am Registration and Refreshments
9.15am Start
8.00pm Close

The Symposium Programme is available to download. (schedule is subject to change)

Venue: Rose Theatre in the Arts Centre (building 5 on the Map) at  Edge Hill University (Directions)

£20 Waged
£10 Concessions
£0 FREE to EHU staff and Students

Registration: Registration is now closed

For further information please contact:  [email protected]

Festival of Ideas 2017 brochureFestival of Ideas 2017

Hosted by Edge Hill University’s Institute for Creative Enterprise (ICE) this date is part of a wider programme of events taking place at the University throughout the month of June 2017 as part of the Festival of Ideas.  The Festival explores themes of Identity and Belonging in a stimulating programme of debates, talks, films, exhibitions, round-tables and performances.


‘100 Years of an Artist: Leonora Carrington’ | 6 April 2017
We are delighted to announce ICE Director, Prof Roger Shannon, has been invited to speak at this international panel to celebrate the centennial of Leonora Carrington.  He will present his paper ‘Working Toward the re-Lancastrianization of Leonora Carrington – a view from Edge Hill University on the Edge of the Lancashire plain’. The event will take place in the Library of Mexico, Mexico City. More Information about 100 years of an artist…

ICE In Conversation About Leonora Carrington | 29 April 2015
ICE presents Joanna Moorhead and Francesco Manacorda in conjunction with Tate Liverpool.
Learn more about the intriguing history and artistic practice of Leonora Carrington, who became a national treasure in Mexico thousands of miles from her origins in Chorley, Lancashire. Join Joanna Moorhead (Journalist, co writer of ‘Surreal Friends’ and cousin of Leonora Carrington) as she discusses the life and work of Leonora with Francesco Manacorda, Tate Liverpool’s Artistic Director. Read more about the ICE event…

TATE Exhibition: Leonora Carrington | March – May 2015
Edge Hill University sponsored the Leonora Carrington Exhibition  at Tate Liverpool.  The exhibition celebrated the creations of internationally celebrated member of the surrealist movement, Leonora Carrington (1917-2011).  This was the first UK solo exhibition of work by Chorley-born Leonora Carrington for over 20 years.  More information Leonora Carrington.

LITERARY EVENT: Leonora | 18 April 2015
Edge Hill University supported the literary event at Liverpool Town Hall, April 18, at which acclaimed Mexican writer Elena Poniatowska discussed her books, including her recent biographical novel ‘Leonora’ about the Lancashire born surrealist artist Leonora Carrington (Elena’s close friend) who is currently the subject of a solo retrospective exhibition at Tate Liverpool (also supported by Edge Hill University).  More information Elena Poniatowska.

DANCE PERFORMANCE: Imaginarium | March – May 2015
Imaginarium is an exploration through dance of the metamorphic work of Leonora Carrington. Developed partly through a residency at Crookhey Hall, Carrington’s childhood home, the work captures the physicality, colour and energy found within Carrington’s sketches and paintings. The performer’s embodied response has been a direct reaction to the artist’s sense of mobilization, colour and imagery and their experience at Crookhey Hall.  Performed by James Hewison (Edge Hill University) and Michelle Man (Edge Hill University). Original music by Alfonso García de la Torre Rey. More information about the dance performance and watch the dance here: YouTube

‘Leonora and me’ by Joanna Moorhead, The Guardian:
‘Leonora Carrington ran off with Max Ernst, hung out with Picasso, fled the Nazis and escaped from a psychiatric hospital. Joanna Moorhead travels to Mexico to track down her long-lost cousin, one of Britain’s finest – and neglected – surrealists.’  Read More about Leonora Carrington…

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