Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-Garde Exhibition Catalogue
Move your mouse over image or click to enlarge

Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-Garde Exhibition Catalogue


Pre-order for dispatch from 10 October.

This fascinating, interdisciplinary, and generously illustrated book presents creative pairings that defy the idea of the modern artist as a solitary genius.

In the art world, pairs of individuals often inspire each other's works. These intimate relationships are explored in all their various forms - obsessional, conventional, mythic, fleeting, life-long - in this book that illuminates the works of painters, sculptors, photographers, designers, poets, writers, musicians, dancers, and performers of the modern era.

Each couple is profiled in chapters that feature candid portraiture, illustrations of the works that illuminate the impact each had on the other, and an introductory text that pinpoints the significance of the relationship. Two additional chapters focus on Surrealist couples and the Temple of Friendship in Paris to explore the common traits of collaboration, friendship, anti-establishment notions and radicalism that variously characterized these largely literary groups. Reflecting a contemporary view of sexuality and relationships, this book also offers a counterpoint to the notion of the female as muse, highlighting instead female empowered relationships and emphasizing a new balance between male and female creative output. Featuring artists across a wide variety of disciplines, this volume also reveals how creative individuals came together to overcome the constraints of their time, reshape art, redefine gender stereotypes, and forge new ways of living.

Edited by Jane Alison and Coralie Malissard. 

The exhibition Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-Garde is at the Barbican from 10 Oct 2018 to 27 Jan 2019. Book tickets now

Hardback, 352 pages
Dimensions: 22.9 x 29.2 cm