AO On-Site – “A Surrealism Salon,” organized by Performa’s Young Visionaries and hosted by Lia Chavez, Monday, July 29th

August 15th, 2013

Artist Lia Chavez and Surrealist-attired guests at A Surrealism Salon
Artist Lia Chavez and Surrealist-attired guests at A Surrealism Salon

On Monday July 29th, Performa presented A Surrealism Salon at the downtown loft of artist Lia Chavez, who presided over the event and moderated the eclectic panel discussion with speakers Dr. Megan Fleming, therapist Heide Banks, Performa 13 artist Shana Lutker, Peforma assistant curator Summer Guthery, and Marc Arthur, Performa research and archives. Modeled on the salon discussions among André BretonMax Ernst and other early surrealists which helped to develop and continually reshape the 20th century artistic movement, the panel endeavored to “explore dreams and desires.” Addressing a diverse range of topics, the panel used their art historical subject as an unexpected but welcome entry point into more current subjects surrounding the “digital revolution,” such as Facebook and the dating app Tinder.

Panelists at A Surrealism Salon, from left: Marc Arthur, Dr. Megan Fleming, Lia Chavez, Heide Banks, Summer Guthery, Shana Lutker
Panelists at A Surrealism Salon, from left: Marc Arthur, Dr. Megan Fleming, Lia Chavez, Heide Banks, Summer Guthery, Shana Lutker

Prior to all of this, guests were treated to whimsical culinary novelties by Lindsay Tarquinio of The Simple Delights. Treats such as Le Violon d’Ingres (roasted black grape toast with goat cheese and thyme) as well as Rrose Sélavy Tartlets (mascarpone crème and edible rose petals) appropriately fit the theme, appealing to the guests’ gourmet palate as well as their intellectual faculties.

Surrealist hors d'oeuvres
Surrealist hors d’oeuvres

Organized by Performa’s young patrons program, the Visionaries, A Surrealism Salon was held in anticipation of Performa13, the fifth edition of Roselee Goldberg’s visual art performance biennial, which will take place in New York November 1 through 24. The Visionaries’ events, made possible by AOL (whose “digital prophet and brand evangelist” David Shing was in attendance) brings together artists, curators, connoisseurs and art world professionals to exchange ideas and raise creative and critical awareness of performance art and its place in contemporary culture.

Guests at A Surrealism Salon listening to the panel discussion
Guests at A Surrealism Salon listening to the panel discussion

Guests listening to AOL's David Shing at A Surrealism Salon
Guests listening to AOL’s David Shing at A Surrealism Salon

All photos by Debbie Huang, courtesy of Performa

—A. Berman

Related Links
Performa 13 [event site]