Dada, Surrealism and their Heritage? The North American Reception of Dada and Surrealism

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Sexuality and the body were often represented ambiguously in work by artists who could be understood as taking up the legacy of Surrealism. Dada, Surrealism and their Heritage included two works that have been understood as marking a shift away from Abstract Expressionism to Pop Art: Target with Plaster Casts by Jasper Johns and Bed by Robert Rauschenberg. The emphasis on the body and sexuality that can be traced from Duchamp's erotic works of the 1940s to the drooping abstractions of Eva Hesse was, however, only one way of understanding the heritage of Surrealism in American art of the 1960s. The film Dreams that Money Can Buy demonstrates the way in which psychoanalysis had been commodified in North America and begins to show why it came to be distrusted by the generation of artists who developed their practices away from Abstract Expressionism.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Companion to Dada and Surrealism
EditorsDavid Hopkins
Place of PublicationChichester
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781118476215
ISBN (Print)9781118476185
Publication statusPublished - 26 Apr 2016


  • Dada
  • Surrealism
  • American Art
  • Contested heritage
  • Psychoanalysis
  • Sexuality
  • Abstract expressionism
  • Dada
  • North America

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