Skip to Content

Open today 10–11 a.m. members | 11 a.m.–6 p.m. public. Learn more.

Exquisite Corpse

A work made of pen and black ink, and graphite with smudging, with colored pencils and colored crayons on tan wove paper.
© 2018 Man Ray Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris, © 2018 Successió Miró / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

Image actions

  • A work made of pen and black ink, and graphite with smudging, with colored pencils and colored crayons on tan wove paper.

Date:

1928

Artist:

Man Ray (Emmanuel Radnitzky) (American, 1890-1976)
Joan Miró (Spanish, 1893-1983)
Yves Tanguy (American, born France, 1900-1955)
Max Morise (French, 1900-1973)

About this artwork

The so-called cadavre exquis or exquisite corpse, a Surrealist visual game, was created in winter 1925–26, when members of the group gathered in the evenings. If conversation lagged, they invented games to spark the unconscious. The exquisite corpse grew out of one such invention, which reimagined the children’s game of “head, body, legs,” in which each participant adds to a drawing without seeing the preceding contributions, which are hidden by folding the paper. The results are strange, sometimes violent, combinations of images. The Surrealists produced many such drawings (the Art Institute has several; for example, 2018.333, 2018.334, and 2018.335), and these collaborative experiments were profoundly influential. The Chicago-based Hairy Who artists also played the game in the late 1960s, but with more playful results (for example, 2018.684, 2018.685, 2018.686, 2018.687, 2018.688, and 2018.689).

Status

On View, Gallery 397

Department

Prints and Drawings

Artist

Man Ray (Emmanuel Radnitzky)

Title

Exquisite Corpse

Origin

France

Date

1928

Medium

Pen and black ink, and graphite with smudging, with colored pencils and colored crayons on tan wove paper

Inscriptions

Inscribed, verso, upper left, in graphite: “Man Ray / Tanguy / Miro / Morise”; inscribed and dated, verso, upper center, in black ink, in Breton's hand: “"CADAVRE EZQUIS" (1928) / De haut en bas: Man Ray, Yves Tanguy, Joan Miró, Max Morise”; signed, verso, center right, in black ink: “André Breton”; inscribed verso, center left, in graphite: “60”; verso, lower right, in graphite: “68.200”

Dimensions

362 × 231 mm

Credit Line

Lindy and Edwin Bergman Collection

Reference Number

2018.333

Copyright

© 2018 Man Ray Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris, © 2018 Successió Miró / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

Share

Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions

Share