From the fantastic to the frightful, don’t miss this rare glimpse into the world of renowned filmmaker Guillermo del Toro and his cabinet of curiosities. Taking inspiration from del Toro’s extraordinary imagination, At Home with Monsters reveals his creative process through his personal collection of art, artefacts, books, props, and ephemera, all culled from Bleak House, del Toro’s creative haven located in Los Angeles.
This unique exhibition explores the creative mind behind one of the most inventive filmmakers of our generation revealing his influences, from the Medieval era to contemporary culture, and his particular obsession with horror, fantasy and the rich heritage of the Victorian era.
“To find beauty in the profane. To elevate the banal. To be moved by genre. These things are vital for my storytelling,” says Guillermo del Toro. “This exhibition presents a small fraction of the things that have moved me, inspired me, and consoled me as I transit through life. It’s a devotional sampling of the enormous love that is required to create, maintain, and love monsters in our lives.”
Rather than a traditional chronology or filmography, At Home with Monsters is organized thematically, beginning with visions of childhood and innocence and the Victorian era that so deeply inspires del Toro; continuing through explorations of death and the afterlife, magic, occultism, alchemy, Frankenstein and horror, freaks and monsters; and concluding with a celebration of comics, movies and popular culture.
“Guillermo del Toro believes that we need monsters,” says Jim Shedden, co-curator and the AGO’s Manager of Publishing. “To him, the imperfections of monsters are found in all of us, whether we see them or not. At the same time, despite his empathy for the tragic monster, del Toro is fascinated with truly terrifying and invulnerable monsters. By witnessing his incredible creative process, we can make unexpected connections among different genres and narratives, high art and pop culture, and blur boundaries between fantasy and reality.”