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“El Rostro Velado”

Koldo Mitxelena Kulturunea

For some years now sexual ambiguity has filled Spanish newspapers and magazines, spiced up television programs and stag parties, and even enlivened the closing celebrations at certain political conventions. In keeping with the media’s growing appetite for spectacle, the representation of this subject has generally been irredeemably superficial. The critically acclaimed exhibition “El Rostro Velado: Travestismo e identidad en el arte” (The veiled visage: transvestism and identity in art), however, presented a serious, historically based study of images of transvestism in the twentieth century.

The show’s curator, José Miguel G. Cortés, built his argument around several constellations of artists, the first of which comprised Man Ray, August Sander, Lisette Model, and Claude Cahun. In this context Cahun recovered the central position that has been denied her for decades. In the examples shown

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