Buried Treasure: The Unconscious in European Art
“We must change life” was the rallying cry of a group of young Parisian artists in the 1920s. Known as surrealists, they challenged the conservative social, religious and sexual values of the middle class. Instead of order, they craved chaos. Rather than focusing on the material world, they explored the realm of dreams and the unconscious. They uncovered what lies at the core of human existence – the irrational urges to love, to desire and to destroy.
A legacy of surrealism may be identied in a sculpture by contemporary artist Huma Bhabha who deploys found and discarded materials to rework the familiar into the strange.
It is in my nature to be irrational rather than rational.
To love wholehearted and to hate intensely.
To desire, to earned, to strive.
To destroy, to breakdown, to become nothing.
A pile of rubbles, mangled and exhausted.
Then lifted up again, renewed and enriched.