Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Art Business

First Advisor

Eric Wolf

Second Advisor

Stephanie Jeanjean


The artworks of Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo are replete with
symbolism and evocations of the occult, formulating bodies of work that are charged with magic and mysticism. When studied within the context of their male contemporaries of the Surrealist group, it becomes apparent that this use of the occult operates as a compelling and historically based feminist strategy. Immediately stemming from the occult revival of the previous century and the issues for females presented by Surrealism, the foundations of this idea originate much earlier in the pagan traditions of antiquity and the witch hunts of the 15th through 18th centuries. This thesis explores the historical relationship between feminism and occult practice, specifically diving into its manifestation within the artworks of Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo.