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Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-garde at the Barbican

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Time 10:00
Date 10/10/18
Price £16

An exhibition that explores the relationship between creatives and intimacy in the early 20th century.

Running from: Wed 10 Oct 2018 - Sun 27 Jan 2019.

A rich exploration of intimate relationships in all their various forms, from obsessional and fleeting to life-long – revealing a playground for experimentation and creativity.

What do we mean by a ‘couple’ today? With society’s changing approach to marriage, partnerships, family, parenthood and gender, this major exhibition is the first to showcase creative individuals who came together in intimate relationships to work across photography, sculpture, architecture, poetry, music and dance. In so doing, they forged new kinds of art and ways of living, while challenging gender stereotypes.

Featuring around 40 principal couples; among them legendary figures such as Varvara Stepanova and Alexander Rodchenko; Dora Maar and Pablo Picasso; Barbara Hepworth and Ben Nicholson; Sophie Taeuber-Arp and Jean Arp; Camille Claudel and Auguste Rodin; Aino and Alvar Aalto; Lee Miller and Man Ray; Virginia Woolf and Vita Sackville-West; as well as lesser known couples such as Emilie Flöge and Gustav Klimt; Romaine Brooks and Natalie Clifford-Barney; George Platt Lynes, Monroe Wheeler and Glenway Wescott; and Maria Martins and Marcel Duchamp.

COMPETITION: Win 1x pair of tickets to attend Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-garde at the Barbican. (Please state which day you would prefer to attend)
To enter the competition, send an email to with the correct answer in the ‘subject’ line. The winner will be randomly selected.

Q: Accoding to certain accounts, the beginning of Dora Maar's relationship with Picasso marked the end of her artistic career. When the young photographer took up with the older, celebrated artist in 1936, she was a rising star in which artistic circles?
A: .1) Neo-expressionism .2) Futurism .3) Photorealism .4) Surrealism