Finding Dora Maar: A Surreal(ist) Story Told through an Address Book


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When Brigitte Benkemoun bought a leather diary case from eBay, she did not expect to find a small address book tucked into the back. And she certainly didn’t expect that book to contain the names of some of the most renowned figures of 20th century Paris—names like André Breton, Brassaï, Jean Cocteau, and Jacques Lacan. She began researching these contacts until she uncovered the identity of the address book’s former owner: the surrealist artist Dora Maar.

In this episode, Benkemoun discusses the provocative life of Dora Maar and the book that resulted from her research, a unique blend of detective story, biography, memoir, and cultural history. Finding Dora Maar: An Artist, an Address Book, a Life has recently been translated into English by Jody Gladding and published by Getty Publications.

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