Surrealism Definition

Surrealism is a movement in the art scene that emerged after the World War I. It's style is described to be the dream-like themes often times represented with photographic precision with the main goal to activate the subconscious part of the brain and lead a person to a state of “super-reality” - surreality. The official starting point for this movement was the release of “Surrealist Manifesto” by Andre Breton.

Giorgio de Chirico, The Uncertainty of the Poet Surrealism

Surrealism Artists

Salvador Dali

One of the most famous painters of all time and leader of the this very special movement he really opened up a new chapter for art in general, mixing senses of sexuality and subconscious imagery, putting regular items in their most irregular states.

Salvador Dali Dream, Caused by the Flight of a Bee (Around a Pomegranate, a Second Before Waking Up) Surrealism

Frida Kahlo

As she famously said: “They thought I was a Surrealist, but I wasn't. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.” Her foundational motifs were taken from popular Mexican culture and rearranged with mythical and fantasy worlds.

Frida Kahlo The Wounded Deer Surrealism

Rene Magritte

A french surrealist painter who's popularity has risen in the last few decades. As opposed to Dali who mostly painted the dream worlds, he concentrated on defining the regular objects and opening up new senses in them.

René Magritte The Treachery of Images Surrealism

Marc Chagall

As he officially declined the proposition to join the movement, claiming (just like Kahlo) that there is no ties to surreality in his works as it's all “real”. His flying people that one can often find in his paintings became his benchmark and recognised all over the world.

Marc Chagall The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk Surrealism

Max Ernst

He entered Surrealism after being a key figure in Dadaism. He was the one responsible of creating frottage as technique. He also often stated that he never created his works, but rather he was a spectator of this act of creation.

The Triumph of Surrealism Max Ernst Surrealism

Surrealism Photography

Just like Surrealism in art it represents the lead to the deep subconsciousness. Often times there are regular objects represented in the completely new light that changes their usual meaning or form.

Dust Breeding Man Ray Surrealism Photo

For example it could be a macro image of tiny things that appear surrealistically huge or shots being taken from a completely new perspective that distorts the acceptable line work completely.

Père Ubu Dora Maar Surrealism Photo

A lot of experimentation was put on the film developing techniques to create special effects on the developed material. Often times there were scratches and other types distortion applied to the film itself.

[Mystery of the Street] Otto Uhmber Surrealism Photo

Other then that it was also common to put objects in the unnatural circumstance or present them in the unnatural way.

Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí, still from L’Age d’Or Surrealism Photo

Surrealism Tattoo Artworks

Surrealism in Tattoo has started taking off just about a couple decades ago. It's main themes are perspective illusions, unnatural oversaturated colouring, merged objects and philosophical tattoos with meaning.

Surrealist Leg Tattoos

A lot of it's inspiration is also drawn from the original surrealism painters and their famous works are often copied or somehow rearranged into something different.

Amazing Surrealist Tattoos Dali

Surrealism In Film

Following along with other surrealistic movements at the time surrealism in film also had it's long run all the way to the second half of 20th century. It's main motifs were of the same nature as in every other art type, but it's techniques varied quite much and could do things that brushes could not, as to the complexity of the film making as whole.

L'age d'or Surrealism Film

For example: superimpositions, overexposures, fast-motion, slow-motion, reverse-motion, stop-motion, lens flares, large depth of field, shallow depth of field, and more bizarre camera tricks could transform the original image in front of the lens into something new once exposed on the film plate.

Eraserhead Lynch Surrealism Film