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ArticlesNewsSummer 2010

Pascal Pia selections in the Surrealism exhibition

Twilight Visions: Surrealism, Photography, and Paris, an exhibition that premiered at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts in Nashville, included books loaned from the Pascal Pia collection in the

Eugène Atget. The wine seller 15 Rue Boyer, 1910-1911. Gelatin silver print.

W.T. Bandy Center for Baudelaire and Modern French Studies. The most notable loan is Pia’s copy of Nadja by Andre Breton, signed by the author, widely considered as the most important novel of the Surrealism movement.

Eugène Atget. Rue du Figuier, 1924. Albumen print, 9 in. x 7 in.

The New York curator of the exhibition, art historian Therese Lichtenstein, included the Pia collection works among items from important private and museum collections. The exhibition was at the International Center of Photography in New York City through May and then traveled to the Telfair Museum of Art in Savannah, Ga., from June through September.

More than 120 photographs by the artists Man Ray, Eugène Atget, Luis Buñuel, Salvador Dalí and Brassaï and others make up the exhibition’s featured works, supported by select films, books, journals and period ephemera by Surrealist photographers, filmmakers and writers during the 1920s and 1930s.

Pascal Pia was a literary critic, poet, and editor who occupied a prominent place in 20th century French literary and intellectual circles. His collection of more than 20,000 volumes was acquired by Vanderbilt in 1981 and includes many historically significant writings about Surrealism.

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