Rahon, Alice (1904-1987) By Johnson, Danielle M.
Alice Rahon (1904-1987) was a French-born artist and poet associated with the Surrealist movement and Mexican art. Rahon was born Alice Marie Yvonne Philppot in Chenecey-Buillon in the east of France and spent most of her childhood in Paris. In 1931, she met Wolfgang Paalen (1905–59), whom she would marry in 1934, and the two became involved in the Surrealist movement. Under the name Alice Paalen she published several volumes of poetry that were praised by Surrealist leader André Breton (1896–1966). In 1939, Rahon and Paalen joined a group of exiled Surrealists in Mexico, and Rahon changed her focus from poetry to visual art. Her work shows an abiding interest in the symbols and textures of pre-historic, pre-Columbian, and indigenous art and artefacts, which she often merged with her experience of the physical landscape. She lived the rest of her life in Mexico and contributed to the development of modern art in that country.