Negative of X-Ray of Meret Oppenheim’s Skull, 1964
|Birth name||Méret Elisabeth Oppenheim|
6 October 1913|
Berlin, German Empire
|Died||15 November 1985
|Field||Painting, Sculpture, Poetry|
|Training||Académie de la Grande Chaumière, Basel School of Arts and Crafts|
|Works||Object: Breakfast in Fur (1936)
My Nurse (1936)
Giacometti's Ear (1933)
|Awards||Art Award of the City of Basel|
Méret Oppenheim (6 October 1913 – 15 November 1985) was a German-born Swiss, Surrealist artist, and photographer. Oppenheim was a member of the Surrealist movement of the 1920s along with André Breton, Luis Buñuel, Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, and other writers and visual artists. Besides creating art objects, Oppenheim also famously appeared as a model for photographs by Man Ray, most notably a series of nude shots of her interacting with a printing press.
Méret Oppenheim was born on October 6, 1913, in Berlin. Oppenheim is named after Meretlein, a wild child who lives in the woods in the novel ‘’Der Grüne Heinrich’’ (The Green Henry) by Gottfried Keller. Oppenheim had two siblings, a sister named Kristin (born 1915) and a brother named Burkhard (born 1919). Her father, a German doctor, was conscripted into the army at the outbreak of war in 1914. Consequently, Oppenheim and her mother moved to live with Oppenheim's maternal grandparents in Delémont, Switzerland. In Switzerland, Oppenheim was exposed to art and artists from a young age. Oppenheim was inspired by her aunt, Ruth Wenger, especially by Wenger's devotion to art and her modern lifestyle.
In 1932, at the age of eighteen, Oppenheim moved to Paris and sporadically attended the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. In 1933 she met Hans Arp and Alberto Giacometti who, after visiting her studio and seeing her work, invited her to participate in the Surrealist exhibition in the “Salon des Surindépendants,”  held in Paris between October 27 and November 26. Oppenheim met André Breton and began to participate in meetings at the Café de la Place Blanche with the Surrealist circle.
In 1936, Oppenheim had her first solo exhibition in Basel, Switzerland, at the Galerie Schulthess. She continued to contribute to Surrealist exhibitions until 1960. Many of her pieces consisted of everyday objects arranged as such that they allude to female sexuality and feminine exploitation by the opposite sex. Oppenheim’s paintings focused on the same themes. Her originality and audacity established her as a leading figure in the Surrealist movement.
Méret Oppenheim's best known piece is Object (Le Déjeuner en fourrure) (1936). The sculpture consists of a teacup, saucer and spoon that the artist covered with fur from a Chinese gazelle. It is displayed at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The enormous success of this early work would create later problems for Oppenheim as an artist, and soon after its creation she drifted away from the Surrealists. Decades later, in 1972, she artistically commented on its dominance of her career by producing a number of "souvenirs" of Le Déjeuner en fourrure.
In her acceptance speech upon receiving the Art Award of the City of Basel on January 16, 1975, Oppenheim coined the phrase "Freedom is not given to you — you have to take it." 
- “Maureen P. Sherlock, “Mistaken Identities: Méret Oppenheim,” in ‘’The Artist Outsider: Creativity and the Boundaries of Culture, ed. by Michael D. Hall and Eugene W. Metcalf, 276-288 (Washington, DC: Smithsonian, 1993), p. 281”
- Nancy Spector, “Meret Oppenheim: Performing Identities,” in ‘’Meret Oppenheim: Beyond the Teacup,’’ ed. by Jacqueline Burckhardt and Bice Curiger, 35-43 (New York: Independent Curators Incorporated, 1996), p. 37.
- Bice Curiger, Meret Oppenheim: Defiance in the Face of Freedom (Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1989), p. 9
- "Curiger, Defiance, p.10"
- "Curiger, Defiance, p.267"
- Josef Helfenstein, "Against the Intolerability of Fame: Meret Oppenheim and Surrealism," in ‘‘Beyond the Teacup,’’ p. 24
- Helfenstein, "Intolerability of Fame," p.24
- ‘’Beyond the Teacup,’’ p. 165
- "Meret Guy Oppenheim. Object. 1936". Museum of Modern Art. Retrieved 11 July 2011.
- Klingsöhr-Leroy, Cathrin (2004). Uta Grosenick, ed. Surrealism. Taschen Basic Genre. Taschen. p. 80. ISBN 3-8228-2215-9. (Surrealism at Google Books)
-  and 
- Belinda Grace Gardner, "From 'Breakfast in Fur' and Back Again," in Thomas Levy, ed., Meret Oppenheim: From Breakfast in Fur and Back Again (Bielefeld, Germany: Kerber Verlag, 2003), p. 7.
- Kleiner, Fred S.; Mamiya, Christian J. (2005). Gardner's art through the ages (12th ed.). USA: Thompson Learning Co. pp. 999–1000.
- Slatkin, Wendy (2001). Women Artists in History (4th ed.). USA: Pearson Education. pp. 203–204.
- Meyer-Thoss, Christiane (1996). 'Meret Oppenheim: Book of Ideas'. Early Drawings and Sketches for Fashion, Jewelry, and Designs. Gachnang & Springer. ISBN 978-3-906127-51-4. With Photographs by Heinrich Helfenstein. Translated from German by Catherine Schelbert.
- Small gallery of Meret Oppenheim works
- Artcyclopedia entry
- IMAGO: Meret Oppenheim (1988/1996), film
- Dates and a portrait
- Photo & more works