If You Like Surrealism. . .

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If you have a thing for Surrealism, you’ll love The Menil Collection in Houston, Texas (entrance to the Renzo Piano building below), and particularly “Witnesses to a Surrealist Vision” (above), a “room of wonders” within the Surrealism galleries that displays the kinds of curiosities that inspired these artists. There are 200 objects on view, and they include ceremonial costumes, bird specimens, masks, astronomical instruments, and fetish figures–as well as my favorite man covered with nails.

If you’re in Houston, like I was this week (and spring was in the air), check out “Imaginary Spaces: Selections from The Menil Collection” (on until March 1). The exhibition is inspired by a series of installations–organized by John and Dominique de Menil in the late 1960s–that dealt with spatial constructs, from hypothetical and utopian environments to invisible cities to earth art projects.

What and where are your favorite rooms of wonder? Please tell me in comments!

About Steven Heller

Steven Heller is the co-chair of the SVA MFA Designer /Designer as Author + Entrepreneur program, writes frequently for Wired and Design Observer. He is also the author of over 170 books on design and visual culture. He received the 1999 AIGA Medal and is the 2011 recipient of the Smithsonian National Design Award.

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