Surrealism is an art movement in which a persons dreams, nightmares, subconsciousness and fantasy inspire the final works. Which is practically when a dream is used to create an art work. You know when you have a dream that is really weird and it can’t end up true in the real world? For example the Enigma of William tell. You cannot have an extended butt cheek in real life! Surrealists brought their inner realities of the subconscious to the conscious mind. Theybelieved in the innocent eye, that art was created in the unconscious mind. Most Surrealists worked with psychology and fantastic visual techniques, basing their art on memories, feelings, and dreams. They often used hypnotism and drugs to venture into the dream world, where they looked for unconscious images that were not available in the conscious world. These images were seen as pure art to them and to many people of today’s world.In their attempt to explore the unconscious mind, they developed a method of automatic writing and painting in which they didn’t think about what they drew/painted. They tried to approach their work without any thought beforehand, returning to their childlike minds in order to produce pure works of art.
From top down… max Ernst ,René Magritte, Giorgio de Chirico, Joan miro ,Alberto Giacometti
Surrealism was grouped into two categories. The Automatists and the Veristic Surrealists.Automatists focused their work more on feeling and were less investigative. They believed automatism to be “the automatic way in which the images of the subconscious reach the conscious”. However they did not think the images had a meaning or should try to be interpreted. Automatists thought that abstract art was the only way to convey images of the subconscious, and that a lack of form was a way to rebel against traditional art. In this way they were much like Dadaists. They used organic scribbles and curvilinear images. The automatists (Joan Miro, Andre Masson) were greatly influenced by Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud’s theories. On the other side Veristic Surrealists believed subconscious images did have meaning. They felt that these images were a metaphor that, if studied, could enable the world to be understood. Veristic Surrealists also believed that the language of the subconscious world was in the form of image. While their work may look similar, Automatists only see art where Veristic Surrealists see meaning. Veristic surrealists included Salvador Dali, Rene Magritte and Max Ernst.
So as you can see the artwork done by Automatists is abstract and has curves and organic scribbles.
As shown, the veristic surrealists are more realistic and both artworks have some kind of meaning to it.
Surrealism artwork includes the characteristics of the element of surprise, free association, uncensored thought, dream like subject matter, dream like imagery, distorted objects, cooler colours, unrealistic scales, reversal of natural laws, repetition of an image, no guidelines, hidden images, juxtaposition, very simple titles stating the subject matter, the use of devices such as levitation, changing an objects scale, transparency, repetition, displacement of an object and exaggeration.
LaChambreDecoute shows the characterstic of unrealistic scales and exaggeration. It is impossible to have an apple the size of a room. This painting also makes you think, the room is either very small or the apple is very big. It also makes you wonder if the room was especially made to contain the apple.Golconde shows the characteristic of reversal of natural laws, repetition and levitation. Rene Magritte repeats figures of men in black coats over the painting, and makes them look like their hovering. He uses Levitation and reversal of natural laws. Normal people cannot fly and so this painting includes the reversal of natural laws.
Surrealism officially started in Paris,1924 after the end of WW1. It started with the publication of Le Manifeste du Surrealisme by Andre Breton however it grew out of the Dada Movement.
After World War I many artists involved themselves in the Dada movement. The followers of Dada movement protested by means of anti-art gatherings, performances, etc. André Bretonjoined in the Dada activities and started the literary journal Littérature along with Louis Aragon and Philippe Soupault to begin experimenting with automatic writing. Over time, the group attracted more and more people.By 1919, Andre Breton and a group of poets/artists belonged in the Dada movement but they eventually branched off from them in 1922, creating a less negative movement known as the Surrealist movement. The Dada movement began in Paris in the 1920’s. The Dada movement was a movement that allowed artists to express their disgusts/horrors of the war and of life. They had a violent style and an attitude of combat/protest. They wanted to prove pointlessness of war to society and revel a painful truth. The Dada movement was declared ‘dead’ in 1922 because people found it too organised. The surrealism movement officially started after WW1 in 1924.
Andre Breton was the founder of Surrealism and introduced his style in his manifesto known asLe Manifeste du Surrealisme. A manifesto is basically a statement written by an artist about the meaning of their work, outlying the aims of the movement. In his manifesto, he proposed that artists should seek access to their unconscious mind in order to make art inspired by Surrealism. He described surrealism as a movement in which imagination rules ‘Only imagination makes me aware of the possible’ he quoted. At first, his group only included poets and writers but the movement gradually expanded to include other artistic genres, also being fascinated by the unconscious part of their mind, the unusual and unexpected.
An Austrian Doctor who studied the unconscious. He thought that by interpreting the meaning of his patients dreams, he could help them recover from mental conditions and change their view of reality. Sigmund Freud was a powerful influence on the Surrealists. The surrealists were highly impressed with Sigmund Freud’s insights into the unconscious, which they thought would be a major source of untapped pictures and imagery. They used Freud’s theories to clear away boundaries between fantasy and reality. Freud once said, “A dream that is not interpreted is like a letter that is not opened,” and Surrealists adapted this idea into their artwork.Before the Surrealism movement had begun, Andre Breton often turned to Freud’s ideas and theories resulting in a visit in 1921 . Andre Breton came back from his visit even more interested in dreams, and so published his manifesto gathering a group of poets and artists. Surrealists strongly supported the ideas of Freud but Freud did not support theirs.
The Surrealist art movement opened the doors to a style of art that the world had never before seen. Odd techniques were used to paint and interpret images of the subconscious and the dream world. Though many Surrealist artists used traditional means of painting, they developed techniques to bring metaphor and meaning into their work. This style and technique received much rejection by the art world but was eventually accepted and paved the way for other expressive forms of art such as Pop Art, Abstract Expressionism, Conceptualism and post modern art.
A author quotes that Dali’s success is because-his imagery reaches directly to the subconscious of the viewer, it releases fantasy and the play of imagination by triggering normally repressed areas of response. Salvador Dali distorted objects and placed them in unreal settings. Andre Breton made him an official member of the Surrealist movement in 1928, shortly after the premiere of Unchienandalou when Dali visited Paris. Many people thought he was crazy, due to the fact that he had unrealistic ideas. He once wore a diving suit to give a lecture at a Surrealist exhibition in London. Another time, he wanted to make a painting using snail shells filled with paint and have his house guarded with rhinoceroses. He once said “ The only difference between a madman and me is that I am not mad”
SalvadorDali was a great believer in Sigmund Freud’s theories and ideas. He even visited Freud and showed him his painting (Metaphorsis of Narcissus). Freud didn’t support the surrealists and thought of them as complete fools but was impressed with Dali’s skills. 17th century painters, Vermeer and Velasquez were also both influences of Dali, he even wanted to be taught to paint like him. In 1923, Salvador Dali discovered the work of Giorgio de Chirico and his dreamlike precise style also influencing his style.
Objects that Salvador Dali often used included ants (which stood for transition), food (comes from dali’s childhood urge to be a cook) cherries( from eating of a bowl of cherries at his friends bedside table) teeth (from freudian influence) melons (from fantasing in his shed), soft watches (which meant that time is fluid) and drawes (symbolized memories that could be locked away.)Dali was fascinated by the way it is possible to see two objects in one shape, but not at the same time. He used this effect called the Paranoiac critical method and used this in a number of works such as ‘Le surrealisme au service de la revolution’, which when viewed on it's side resembles a face. Dali would stand on his head to induce hallucinations as inspiration
Both the Dadaists and the surrealists showed their feelings and hatred towards the war although the surrealists were less violent. In 1936, when the Spanish civil war began Salvador Dali showed his feelings and horror of the civil war through his piece known as ‘Autumn Cannibalism’
The persistence of memory 1931Autumn Cannibalism 1936Metaphorphis of Narcissus 1937Lobster TelephoneChrist of St john of the cross 1951Swans reflecting elephants 1937Mae West Lips Sofa 1937Ballerina in a Deaths Head 1939Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening 1944The elephants 1948Tuna fishing 1966
By Maddy and Julia
o A movement in which imagination rules."Although the dream is a very strange phenomenon and aninexplicable mystery, far more inexplicable is the mysteryand aspect our minds confer on certain objects andaspects of life.” G.de ChiricoAn art movement in which a personsdreams, nightmares, subconsciousness and fantasy inspirethe final works.
• André Breton 1896-1966• Salvador Dali 1904-1989• Sigmund Freud 1856-1939• Max Ernst 1891-1976• Giorgio de Chirico 1888-1978• René Magritte 1898-1967• Pablo Picasso 1881-1973• Alberto Giacometti 1901-1966• Joan Miro 1893-1983• Frida Kahlo 1907-1954
Veristic Surrealists Automatists• Believed Subconscious • Art work focused on images had meanings. feeling, less investigative.• Thought that artworks • Did not believe that art were like metaphors. had meanings behind• More realistic compared them and so should not to > be interpreted.• Believed that the • Believed Abstract art was language of the the only way to convey subconscious world was images. in the form of an image. • Much like the Dadaists• all about MEANING. • All about FEELINGS.
Andre Masson Battle of the fishes 1927 <<Joan MiroThe beautiful bird revealing theunknown to the lovers 1941 >>
Rene Magritte The unexpected Answer <<Rene MagritteThe son of a man >>
• Element of surprise • No guidelines• Free association • Hidden Images• Uncensored thought • Juxtaposition• Dream like subject matter • Very simple titles• Dream like imagery • Levitation• Distorted objects • Transparency• Cooler colours • Displacement of an object• Unrealistic scales • Exaggeration• Reversal of natural laws • Contradicting images• Repetition of an image
Rene Magritte La Chambre Decoute 1952 <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< Characteristics of unrealistic scales, exaggeration and juxtaposition.Rene MagritteGolconde 1952>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Characteristics of reversal ofnatural laws, repetition of anobject, levitation
• Artists responded to the world they lived in and expressed their horror and discomfort with the current state of social and political affairs. (e.g. WW1)• Shaped by the pain and destruction of war.• Wanted to show everyone that war was not right… and reveal a painful truth.
o André Breton (Pope of Surrealism)o 19th Feb 1896-28 September 1966o Ex-member of Dada group, Founder of Surrealismo Drafted the Surrealist Manifesto in 1924o Believed in art as a anti-war protest
The father of psychoanalysis. The influencer of Surrealism
• Surrealism has introduced us to new possibilities, and a unimaginable world. Surrealist artworks suck us into worlds that are distorted, compared to the one we now. It has opened our eyes to new possibilities that things can be different, wacky, bizarre and surreal.• Surrealism has changed our world. Today, many commercials and movies involve surrealistic imagery which really shows that surrealism is used World Wide.• Opened the doors to a unseen movement.• Surrealism has influenced many other art movements such as Pop art, Abstract Expressionism, Conceptualism and post modernist art.
• Ebdrup, N 2012, Surrealism is mind-boggling, ScienceNordic, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://sciencenordic.com/surrealism-mind-boggling>.• L, T 2007, Influences in the life of Salvador Dali, H2g2, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://h2g2.com/approved_entry/A585344>.• Toothman, J, 2010, How Salvador Dali Worked, Howstuffworks.com, accessed 30 October, 2012. <http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/arts/artwork/salvador-dali.htm>• Reds, P 2009, Dada and Surrealism, Hubpages, accessed 28 October 2012, <http://redsperspective.hubpages.com/hub/Dada-and-Surrealism>.• Rijckaert, C 2012, Surrealism which changed the world, EuropePost, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://www.europost.bg/article?id=3727>.• Salvador Dali 2009, The surrealists, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://www.surrealists.co.uk/dali.php>.• Surrealism 2010, ArtStory, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://www.theartstory.org/movement-surrealism.htm>.• What is Surrealism Art 2011, Lifestyl, accessed 30 October 2012, <http://lifestyle.iloveindia.com/lounge/surrealism-art-13192.html>.
• Ades, D 1995, Dali, Thames and Hudson, London.• Bolton, L 2002, Surrealism, Henimann, Oxford.• Radford, R 1997, Dali, Phaidon, London.• Waldberg, P 1997, Surrealism, Thames and Hudson, New York.
Probably the most famous artist of the 20th century, after Picasso“ The only difference between a madman and me is that I am not
• Both the Dadaists and the surrealists showed their feelings and hatred towards the war although the surrealists were less violent. In 1936, when the Spanish civil war began Salvador Dali showed his feelings and horror of the civil war through his piece known as „Autumn Cannibalism‟• Both Dali and the other surrealists left viewers with a confused sensation with their odd and surreal artworks.