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Dankook University
Introduction to Modern Art and Culture

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  1. 1. Dankook University Introduction to Modern Art and Culture: Lecture VB: Surrealism
  2. 2. • psychoanalysis – A method of studying the mind pioneered by the Austrian doctor Sigmund Freud at the end of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth century. Freud argued that the self - the conscious, rational mind - is far less in control of thought and behaviour than we believe, and that the unconscious mind, which Freud described as being fired by powerful, unresolved, and often destructive emotions, is continuously breaking through into everyday conscious life and causing people to behave in irrational ways. Freud especially argued that sexual repression starting in childhood caused deep and long- lasting harm, and advocated various methods to free his patients.
  3. 3. • Sigmund Freud (1856 – 1939) was critical of religion which he argued was an ‘illusion’ that could no longer adequately explain the problems of consciousness, whereas science could. He argued that the mind is divided into conscious (rational motives) and unconscious mind (a store of unconscious motives). The latter are independent of our will – they can’t be controlled - and are created over the years since birth, participating daily in determining our actions, although we are not aware of their influence over our behavior. He divided the self into three parts: 1) the ‘id’ is the collection of unconscious memories created by ‘libido’ - or sexual desires originating in childhood - and are the main content of the unconscious; 2) the ‘super-ego’ is the (largely unconscious) moral conscience that demands the repression of the ‘id’. It originates during childhood through conflicts with the parent figures who are the principal instruments of repression, and then with society as a whole; 3) the ‘ego’ – our ‘normal’ self that perceives, learns and acts in accordance with this social conditioning. Dreams, Freud argued, are not prophecies, as was traditionally believed, but rather memories – the traces of our infantile sexual wishes or ‘id’. For Freud, the arts are understood as a manifestation of disequilibrium in the balance between the ego, id and super-ego. The Interpretation of Dream (1899), Psychopathology of Everyday Life (1901), Totem and Taboo (1913), Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920), The Future of an Illusion (1927), Civilization and Its Discontents (1930)
  4. 4. • unconscious - Not having awareness or sensory perception. Occurring in the absence of conscious awareness or thought. Without conscious control; involuntary or unintended. Often considered a source of creative potential. ‘His art expresses his unconscious desires.’In psychoanalytic theory, the portion of the mind which holds such things as memories and repressed desires that are not subject to conscious perception or control but often affect conscious thoughts and behaviour. The unconscious is an important issue to artists influenced by Surrealism, and also to much postmodern art. • uncanny - Peculiarly unsettling, as if of supernatural origin or nature; eerie; otherworldly. Especially connected to the psychoanalytic theory of Freud where it plays a central role in explaining how unconscious memories from our childhood can ‘haunt’ our present. • automatism - sometimes referred to as ‘pure psychic automatism’. A process of making artworks mechanically, randomly, or by unconscious free association (rather than under the control of a conscious artist). Also called automatic drawing, painting, sculpture or writing
  5. 5. Surrealists surrounding a painting by René Magritte. The text says: ‘I can’t see the …..hidden in the forest’
  6. 6. 1. Background
  7. 7. Hieronymous Bosch, 15th century.
  8. 8. Archimboldo, 17th century
  9. 9. Caspar David Friedrich, 19th century.
  10. 10. Pablo Picasso, Bather, 1920’s
  11. 11. Giorgio de Chirico, The Soothsayer's Recompense, 1913 Metaphysical Art
  12. 12. The Uncertainty of the Poet, 1913
  13. 13. The Song of Love, 1914
  14. 14. 2. The Surrealists
  15. 15. The Menaced Assassin, 1927
  16. 16. René Magritte, the Lovers, 1928
  17. 17. Attempting the Impossible, 1928
  18. 18. The Rape, 1934
  19. 19. The Treason of Images, 1928-29
  20. 20. Max Ernst
  21. 21. Oedipus Rex, 1922
  22. 22. The Blessed Virgin Chastises the Infant Jesus Before Three Witnesses, 1926
  23. 23. Revolution by Night, 1923
  24. 24. Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory 1931
  25. 25. The Great Masturbator, 1929
  26. 26. Metamorphosis of Narcissus, 1937
  27. 27. The Face of War, 1941
  28. 28. Yves Tanguy
  29. 29. Joan Miro, the Farm, 1921
  30. 30. Still Life with Old Shoe, 1937,
  31. 31. Harlequins’ Carnival, 1926
  32. 32. Figures at Night, 1940
  33. 33. Henri Michaux And example of atutomatism
  34. 34. Surrealist film Luis Buñuel, le ChienAndalou, 1928