Monday, June 21, 2010

The Space Between...

The creative process, so far as we are able to follow it at all, consists in the unconscious activation of an archetypal image and elaborating and shaping the image into the finished work. By giving it shape, the artist translates it into the language of the present and so makes it possible for us to find our way back to the deepest springs of life." - Carl Jung

From the Dada activities of World War I, Surrealism was formed. The cultural hub of the movement was Paris in the 1920s, but it's influence quickly spread around the globe. Poet and critic André Breton has long been considered the major spokesman for the Surrealism movement. In his 1924 work "The Surrealist Manifesto" Breton proclaimed that Surrealism was a means of reuniting conscious and unconscious realms of experience so completely, that the world of dream and fantasy would be joined to the everyday rational world in "an absolute reality, a surreality."

Joan Miro , a Spanish artist is recognized as one of the most important of the Surrealists. He created fantasy worlds that lacked realism and challenged reason, as in" Hirondelle Amour", 1933-34, oil on canvas. Notice the elements of surprise, unexpected juxtapositions and non sequitur.

Another artist who painted in the surrealist style was the Belgian painter Rene' Magritte. Her paintings force the viewer to reconsider what is real and what is not, for example the "Les Promendades d' Euclide ", 1955, oil on canvas. The work seems to show a room with a painting mounted on an easel. A window just behind the easel displays a view of a city. Yet a longer look raises a question Is the object on the easel really a painting or the scene behind it? Why is the shape of the tower identical to that of the street? Magritte offers no answers to these questions but instead, leaves us to ponder a picture that makes as much sense as a dream. Surrealism created new styles and techniques that inspired artists to go beyond their dreams with new ideas, new creations and a new world.

Surrealist writers and artists wanted to drive out reason, they were looking for states in which what is deep down in our minds may come to surface. I love the strange confusion between dream and reality, I call this place home, it is freedom in its truest form. I believe in the reality of our dreams and yes Dali... you read my mind.


Brittany said...

This is the stuff that reminds me why I love humanities. I can't get enough. I think I want to sit in on Hum 2020 from Alex just so I can hear his lectures on these artists/movements again. Thanks for posting this, as always I'm obsessed with everything in your blog. Probably because I'm obsessed with YOU!

Crystal said...

Thanks sweetie! I'm obsessed with you as well, in fact it's only been a few days since I've seen you last and the withdraws are already starting! Oh and do you know that you are the smartest person I know? Because you are.

I am so with you,this stuff is like crack to me :-) I wish I would have had humanities as one of my emphases but I guess I feel that way about everything. I need 12 emphases to tie everything I love together.

When can you come over and play?