[09/14/2021] Shapeshifter by Alice Paalen Rahon

[09/14/2021] Shapeshifter by Alice Paalen Rahon

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Translated and with an introduction by Mary Ann Caws (New York Review Books, paperback)

Publication Date: September 14, 2021

Publisher Marketing: Poetry by one of the most powerful female figures in twentieth-century surrealism, now collected in English for the very first time.

Alice Paalen Rahon was a shapeshifter, a surrealist poet turned painter who was born French and died a naturalized citizen of Mexico. Along with her first husband, the artist Wolfgang Paalen, her circle included Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, Joan Miró, Paul Éluard, Man Ray, and Anaïs Nin. Bicultural, bisexual, and fiercely independent, her romantic life included affairs with Pablo Picasso and the poet Valentine Penrose. This new selection of Rahon's poems, included both in the original French and in translation by Mary Ann Caws, celebrates the visionary work of a woman who defied easy definition. Her spellbinding poems, inspired by prehistoric art, lost love, and her travels around the globe, weave together dream, fantasy, and madness.