31 Women Artists Exhibition | A Special Exhibition at the Sedona Arts Center
January 3 – 26, 2020
Prospectus (

Surrealism was the prevailing modern art movement in 1943 when Peggy Guggenheim launched a special exhibition entitled Exhibition by 31 Women at her “Art of This Century” gallery in NYC. Our exhibition in Sedona will include various works by six of the women artists who were featured in the original NYC exhibition from the collection of local art historian Mark Rownd. We will be exhibiting works by Leonora Carrington, Dorothea Tanning, Leonor Fini, Hedda Sterne, Sonja Sekula, and Hazel Guggenheim.

In the early 1940s, many of the European artists associated with surrealism had emigrated to America to escape WWII. Peggy Guggenheim helped to rescue many artists from the Nazi expansion, one of whom was her future husband, Max Ernst. Max later helped Peggy select the artists for the original “Exhibition by 31 Women” this is how he met the artist Dorothea Tanning. One of the founding fathers of Surrealism, Max later married Dorothea and they spent many productive years in Sedona, Arizona intermittently from 1943 to 1957.

Sedona Arts Center is seeking contemporary women artists representing work that has in some way been influenced by the surrealist movement. The scope of the exhibition will be very inclusive. Surrealist influence appears in abstract expressionism, process art, conceptual art, and various forms of magical realism and visionary art as well as collage, sculpture, assemblage, and painting that relies on evocative juxtaposition of various imagery. Because of its relationship to the unconscious and the mythic, surrealism has often been associated with a spiritual quest, situating art as a healer of the rift between nature and human reality through its unique creativity.

Women are the unsung heroes of contemporary art, creating artworks and actively participating in all aspects of modern art from early on. This exhibition, timed to overlap with the Sedona Women’s March and Rally in January of 2020 is themed on the empowerment of Women and the diverse heritage of Surrealism.

The exhibition will be juried by Dr. Catriona McAra, University Curator at Leeds Arts University. She was awarded her doctorate in History of Art at the University of Glasgow and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH), University of Edinburgh. She has published extensively on the art and literature of Dorothea Tanning and Leonora Carrington with a particular interest in feminist aesthetics and surrealist legacies in contemporary practice. She is author of A Surrealist Stratigraphy of Dorothea Tanning’s Chasm (Routledge, 2017), and co-editor with Jonathan P. Eburne of Leonora Carrington and the International Avant-Garde (Manchester University Press, 2017). McAra’s long-term research is feminist revisionary focusing on women’s participation in surrealism and how their legacies are manifest in contemporary practice.

Twenty-five contemporary women artists will be selected for inclusion in the exhibition based on an application including resume materials and 5 images of current work. 2-D, 3-D, and mixed media work of all kinds will be considered. Work must be original and contemporary (created within the last three years).

Timeline of Events

  • Application Deadline: November 15, 2019
  • Notification of Acceptance: December 2, 2019
  • Take-in/Delivery: Work must arrive on the Arts Center Campus on or before December 31, 2019
  • First Friday Opening Reception: January 3, 2020; 5-8pm
  • Possible Curator’s Talk: TBD
  • Presentation/Talk by Mark Rownd: January 17, 2020; 4-6pm
  • Women’s March and Rally: January 18 or 25, TBD (Food Trucks, Speakers, Music, Exhibition Reception)
  • Take-down: January 27, 2020

All artwork must be original by the artist, completed within the last 3 years and for sale.

$30.00 per application. Limited to 5 images per artist. Artist will be responsible for all shipping of artwork to and from the exhibition. Shipping costs to and from the exhibition are the responsibility of the individual artist.


Organization/Company: Sedona Arts Center
Location: Sedona, AZ
Deadline: 11/15/2019
How to Apply: Entering Your Images:
Online entry will be conducted via the Sedona Arts Center Website ( List sizes up to the nearest inch. Submitted images must not include matting or frame. Crop the photos to include only the artwork. Be sure your images are right-side-up. There are plans to create a catalog of the exhibition with one image per artist represented. Submit high quality digital images at 5–9MB. Be sure the size and sales price are correct on your Entry Form.

Sedona Arts Center will retain a 50% commission on all sales except Bronze Sculpture which will be 60/40% in artist’s favor. All entries must be available for purchase and bear a sale price determined by the submitting artist. Payment for artwork sold occurs in the month following the sale.

Images of accepted artwork may be used for promotional purposes. By entering this show the artist consents to promotional use of their accepted artwork. A list of accepted artists will appear on our website and social media pages and a comprehensive marketing campaign for the exhibition will be executed.