The werewolf-like gloves were made in 1934 by Meret Oppenheim (1913-85), the Swiss artist known among Parisian Surrealists as the 'fairy woman'. She was encouraged by artists such as Jean Arp and Alberto Giacometti to exhibit her work with them. In the 1930s, she made her name with everyday utensils made of fur and leather. Her Fur Tea Cup, now in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, was inspired by a visit to the Cafe de Flore in Paris with Dora Maar and Pablo Picasso, who commented that anything could be covered in fur.
The hands come from the collection of Carl Fredrik Reutersward, who organised the first major Oppenheim exhibition in Stockholm in 1967. It was as late as 1984, at the artist's last exhibition, that Oppenheim decided to add the wooden fingers with painted nails.
(Photograph omitted)Reuse content