The life and art of Lancashire-born surrealist icon Leonora Carrington, whose work is currently showing at Tate Liverpool, was explored during a public event at Edge Hill University.

The ‘In Conversation’ evening saw journalist, co-writer of Surreal Friends and cousin of Leonora Carrington Joanna Moorhead join Francesco Manacorda, Tate Liverpool’s Artistic Director, to discuss the intriguing history and artistic practice of Leonora Carrington (1917-2011), who became a national treasure in Mexico thousands of miles from her origins in Chorley, Lancashire.

An Edge Hill academic with a research interest in Carrington’s work has supported Tate Liverpool curators on the exhibition, which runs at the gallery until 31 May. Professor Roger Shannon uncovered a number of pieces which have never publicly been exhibited before and are on display in what is the first UK solo exhibition of her work in over 20 years.

Other events connected to the exhibition include Imaginarium – 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 her sketches and paintings. Imaginarium is performed by Edge Hill performing arts lecturers James Hewison and Michelle Man, with original music by Alfonso García de la Torre Rey. A performance will take place at Tate Liverpool on 10 May. More information is available here: https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/events/2015/03/15/dance-performance-intervention-imaginarium/

There is also a reading of surrealist and fantastical new writing, inspired by Leonora Carrington. Readers include fiction writer Ailsa Cox, whose work is included in Best British Stories 2014, and the poet James Byrne, editor of internationally-renowned poetry magazine The Wolf, both of whom are also Edge Hill academics. The Speaking Trumpet, a free, drop-in event, takes place at Tate Liverpool’s Hospitality Suite on Saturday 16 May, from 2-4pm.

Edge Hill University is sponsoring the Leonora Carrington exhibition, which is also supported by the Government of Mexico as part of the Year of Mexico in the UK 2015.