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Claude Cahun Biography, Wiki, Age, Career, Google Doodle | Who was Photographer Claude Cahun? Bio, Wiki

Who was Claude Cahun?

Claude Cahun (born Lucy Renee Mathilde Schwob 25 October 1894 – 8 December 1954) was a French surrealist photographer, sculptor, and writer.

Schwob adopted the pseudonym Claude Cahun in 1914. She is best known as a writer and self-portraitist, who assumed a variety of performative personae.

Cahun’s work is both political and personal. In Disavowals, she writes: “Masculine? Feminine? It depends on the situation. Neuter is the only gender that always suits me.”

During World War II, Cahun was also active as a resistance worker and propagandist.

Google honors surrealist photographer Claude Cahun with a new Doodle

Google honors surrealist photographer Claude Cahun with a new Doodle
Google honors surrealist photographer Claude Cahun with a new Doodle

Google is celebrating author and surrealist photographer Claude Cahun with a new Doodle, on what would have been their 127th birthday.

Google’s homepage features the black and white artwork of Cahun. The image changes to show Cahun donning different outfits and looks.

Born on this day in 1894 to a Jewish family in Nantes, western France, Cahun was the child of newspaper owner Maurice Schwob and Victorine Marie Courbebaisse. The artist (who was born Lucy Schwob) grew up surrounded by creative people: Maurice’s brother was avant-garde writer Marcel Schwob and his uncle was traveler and writer David Léon Cahun.

According to Google, the artist decided to identify as non-binary, despite gender non-conformity being considered taboo in France at the time.

Claude Cahun Biography, Wiki

In 1912, she started making self-portraits using a camera at the age of eighteen and continued to do so till the 1930s. Cahun is remembered for her elaborately staged portraits of herself that included surreal visual aesthetics. Cahun took pictures of herself disguised in many roles, such as staring powerfully at the camera with a bald head or laying on leaves dressed like a man, buddha, a scary doll, or a lady. In her self-portraits, she disregards the boundaries of desire and gender.

In the early 1920s, she resided in Paris with Suzanne Malherbe, her personal and professional partner. They both collaborated and on many different written pieces, collages, photomontages, and sculptures. They were both zealous political campaigners. The duo printed and circulated propaganda material against the Nazis. Due to this, in 1940 both were arrested until the war was over. Cahun’s health worsened, but she still continued with photography.

Published work by Claude Cahun, include Heroines, 1925 and Aveux non avenus, 1930. She wrote several more essays that got published in journals and magazines. She wrote a short stricture essay in 1934, Les Paris sont Ouverts.

Claude Cahun Biography
Claude Cahun
Full NameLucy Renee Mathilde Schwob
Born25 October 1894
Nantes, France
Died8 December 1954 (aged 60)
Saint Helier, Jersey
Resting placeSt Brelade’s Church
NationalityFrench
Known forPhotography, writing, sculpture, collage
MovementSurrealism
Spouse(s)Marcel Moore

Claude Cahun Partner

Cahun met their lifelong partner and collaborator Marcel Moore (who was previously known as Suzanne Malherbe) in 1909. The pair became “stepsisters” nearly a decade later, when Cahun’s father married Moore’s widowed mother, according to the U.K.’s National Portrait Gallery.

The couple moved to Paris in 1914, where they began their artistic collaborations.

Claude Cahun with her partner Marcel Moore
Claude Cahun with her partner Marcel Moore

In 1937, Cahun and Moore settled in Jersey, one of the Channel Islands between Britain and France. They later became actively involved in the resistance movement against the island’s Nazi occupation, the gallery says.

Claude Cahun Death Reason

Claude’s writing was dedicated to talking out on anti-Semites and especially Nazis, not far after Germany seized the Channel Islands in the year 1940, where the personality named Cahun and Moore were staying together at the time, the pair used their full care to anti-war activity. They produced anti-German publications such as banners, pamphlets, fliers, craftily separated in interesting areas such as fighters’ pockets and inside boxes of cigarettes.

Somehow, the pair was arrested by the forces of Germany in the year 1944 and then both of them were condemned to demise for their offenses. Meanwhile, that death decision was not taken out ere Germany was taken out of the Channel Islands, the treatment of Cahun in jail staying not just vehemently anti-nazi but even of Jewish origin created loss they nevermore completely healed from and then in the year 1954, he pronounced dead.

Now, the Google Doodle honors the artist Claude Cahun by displaying several slideshows, a recreation of a few of the most popular and iconic books from his self-making in which one is highlighting a bold and checkered jacket.

Claude Cahun Career

Cahun’s works encompassed writing, photography, and theatre. She is most remembered for her highly staged self-portraits and tableaux that incorporated the visual aesthetics of Surrealism. During the 1920s Cahun produced an astonishing number of self-portraits in various guises such as aviator, dandy, doll, bodybuilder, vamp and vampire, angel, and Japanese puppet.

Some of Cahun’s portraits feature the artist looking directly at the viewer, head shaved, often revealing only head and shoulders (eliminating body from the view), and a blurring of gender indicators and behaviors which serve to undermine the patriarchal gaze. Scholar Miranda Welby-Everard has written about the importance of theatre, performance, and costume that underlies Cahun’s work, suggesting how this may have informed the artist’s varying gender presentations.

Cahun’s published writings include “Heroines,” (1925) a series of monologues based upon female fairy tale characters intertwined with witty comparisons to the contemporary image of women; Aveux non avenus, (Carrefour, 1930) a book of essays and recorded dreams illustrated with photomontages; and several essays in magazines and journals.

In 1932 Cahun joined the Association des Écrivains et Artistes Révolutionnaires, where she met André Breton and René Crevel. Following this, she began associating with the surrealist group, and later participated in a number of surrealist exhibitions, including the London International Surrealist Exhibition (New Burlington Gallery) and Exposition surréaliste d’Objets (Charles Ratton Gallery, Paris), both in 1936.

Cahun’s photograph from the London exhibition of Sheila Legge standing in the middle of Trafalgar Square, her head obscured by a flower arrangement and pigeons perching on her outstretched arms, appeared in numerous newspapers and was later reproduced in a number of books. In 1934, Cahun published a short polemic essay, Les Paris sont Ouverts, and in 1935 took part in the founding of the left-wing anti-fascist alliance Contre Attaque, alongside André Breton and Georges Bataille. Breton called Cahun “one of the most curious spirits of our time.”

In 1994 the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London held an exhibition of Cahun’s photographic self-portraits from 1927–47, alongside the work of two young contemporary British artists, Virginia Nimarkoh and Tacita Dean, entitled Mise en Scene. In the surrealist self-portraits, Cahun represented herself as an androgyne, nymph, model, and soldier.

In 2007, David Bowie created a multi-media exhibition of Cahun’s work in the gardens of the General Theological Seminary in New York. It was part of a venue called the Highline Festival, which also included offerings by Air, Laurie Anderson, and Mike Garson. Bowie said of Cahun:

You could call her transgressive or you could call her a cross dressing Man Ray with surrealist tendencies. I find this work really quite mad, in the nicest way. Outside of France and now the UK she has not had the kind of recognition that, as a founding follower, friend and worker of the original Surrealist movement, she surely deserves.”

Claude Cahun FAQ’s

Who was Claude Cahun?

Claude Cahun (born Lucy Renee Mathilde Schwob 25 October 1894 – 8 December 1954) was a French surrealist photographer, sculptor, and writer.

How did Claude Cahun die?

The pair was arrested by the forces of Germany in the year 1944 and then both of them were condemned to demise for their offenses. Meanwhile, that death decision was not taken out ere Germany was taken out of the Channel Islands, the treatment of Cahun in jail staying not just vehemently anti-nazi but even of Jewish origin created loss they nevermore completely healed from and then in the year 1954, he pronounced dead.

When did Claude Cahun die?

Claude Cahun died on 8 December 1954 at the age of 60 years.

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