Lecture or talk Our Friends

The Surreal Life of Leonora Carrington

All our galleries will be closed on Wednesday 1 February due to industrial action. Find out more.

Scottish National Gallery Hawthornden Lecture Theatre
  • Thursday, 11 August, 6–8pm

Booking essential


In 2018 the National Galleries of Scotland acquired Leonora Carrington’s portrait of her then-lover, Max Ernst, painted in 1939 when the two were living together in France. This year’s Venice Biennale takes its title, The Milk of Dreams, from a book by her that explored a mystical world of transformation and imagination.

At this time of renewed appreciation of Carrington’s work, we welcome the artist’s cousin, Joanna Moorhead, a journalist and author of The Surreal Life of Leonora Carrington, who will explain Carrington’s mission as an artist and reveal some new developments in her story. Joanna will also talk about why Leonora abandoned her family in the 1930s, and about the unlikely friendship the two cousins forged 70 years later in Mexico.

This event has been rescheduled from our cancelled events programme from Spring 2020.

Leonora Carrington Portrait of Max Ernst About 1939 © Estate of Leonora Carrington. All rights reserved. Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York and DACS, London 2022.
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