Claude Cahun was a French surrealist photographer, sculptor, and writer who challenged gender stereotypes and sexuality questions in the early twentieth century. She was born Lucy Renee Mathilde Schwob and adopted the name Lucy Renee Mathilde Schwob in 1914. She was best known as a self-portraitist and writer. Claude has displayed some of her work in both political and personal contexts. In her autobiography titled “Disavowals,” she wrote, “Masculine? Feminine? It all depends on the circumstances. “The only gender that works for me is neutral.” During WWII, she was an active propagandist as well as a resistance worker.
Claude Cahun was one of those people who never got into the nitty-gritty of being a lady. She portrayed herself as both a man and a woman, and she continued to act against sexuality and gender stereotypes. Lucy Renee Mathilde Schwob called herself Claude Cahun in a 20th-century society where people had no words for changing their gender types, talking about sexuality, and when men were considered to be men and women were considered to be women. She chose the name so that it could be applied to both men and women. Decades after her death, she was recognized in the work of historians, artists, bisexuals, gays, transgender, and queer people.
In 1894, Claude Cahun was born into a Jewish family in Nantes. Her ancestors belonged to the great art of book writing. His uncle was Marcel Schwob, a French symbolist writer known for his best short stories of his time, and his great-uncle was David Leon Cahun, a famous French traveler and writer of his time. Cahun attended a private school in Surrey called Parsons Mead School after experiencing anti-Semitism in high school in Nantes. She later attended the University of Paris, Sorbonne.
|Real Name||Claude Cahun|
|Birth Date||25 October 1894|
|Died Date||8 December 1954|
|Birth Place||Nantes, France|
Around 1914, she began to change her name and began referring to herself as Claude Cahun. She settled in Paris in the early 1920s with a lifelong partner and step-sibling named Suzanne Malherbe, who was later known as Marcel Moore. When Cahun’s biological divorced father and Moore’s biological widowed mother married, they became step-siblings. This occurred after Cahun and Moore began a romantic and artistic relationship. Cahun and Moore began working on collaborative projects such as written works, sculptures, collages, and photomontages for the rest of their lives. Many of their articles and novels were published, and they became friends with Robert Desnos, Henri Michaux, and Pierre Morhange.
Cahun worked as a writer, photographer, and stage manager. She is best known for her surrealist work, which incorporated visual aesthetics and self-portraits. During the 1920s, Cahun painted a staggering number of self-portraits as dolls, vampires, angels, dandys, aviators, and Japanese puppets. Some of her artistry loos included work like having her head shaved, removing the body from the frame and revealing only the head and shoulders, blurring gender indicators, and many more.
In front of the audience, she displayed a variety of artistry work based on gender presentation. Aside from self-portraits, Cahun published numerous write-ups in magazines and journals, including “Heroines” (1925), Carrefour, 1930, and numerous other essays. She joined the Association des Écrivains et Artistes Révolutionnaires in 1932, after which she participated in many surrealistic exhibitions, including the London International Surrealist Exhibition.
|Height||in feet inches – 5’ 3” – in Centimeters – 160 cm|
|Weight||in Kilograms – 48 kg – in Pounds – 105 lbs|