Surrealism: Freedom Imagined focuses on the development of Surrealism in the Caribbean, highlighting overlooked histories and their legacies in contemporary art practices. Conceptualized within a historical framework of a modern avant-garde, the exhibition traces the history of Surrealism in the Caribbean, establishing Surrealist encounters in Europe and the Caribbean from 1929–1963, and exploring how artists such as Hector Hyppolite in Haiti and Wifredo Lam in Cuba, alongside Surrealist thinkers like André Breton and the Martinican Surrealists, became central figures in the Caribbean Surrealist movement.
Caribbean Surrealism, traced to Aimé and Suzanne Césaire, gave way to the establishment of Afro-surrealism—a term coined by poet Amiri Baraka—in the United States, which continues to influence contemporary artists in both the Caribbean and the United States. Surrealism: Freedom Imagined develops new research and scholarship that addresses contemporary art practices, highlighting how Caribbean Surrealism has been central in generating a contemporary discourse on identity.
Artists may include: Wifredo Lam, Salvador Dalí, Man Ray, André Masson, Agustin Cardenas, Carlos Enriquez, Amelia Pelaez, Hector Hyppolite, Wilson Bigaud, Kara Walker, Sam Durant, Romare Bearden, Martin Syms, José Bedia, Hervé Telemaque, Allora & Calzadilla, Peter Doig, Chris Ofili, Petion Savain, Adam Pendelton, Arthur Jafa, Simone Leigh, Melvin Edwards, Eldzier Cortor, Edouard Duval Carrié, Eugenio Fernández Granell, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Elia Alba, Firelei Baez, and Maya Deren.
Surrealism: Freedom Imagined is organized by PAMM Curator María Elena Ortiz.