A fine art style of the early 20th century, it was a joining of incongruous images to create an impossible, uncanny object.
Emphasis was on validity and fascination with visions from dreams and fantasies, as well as an intuitive, spontaneous method of recording such imagery, often combining unrelated or unexpected objects in compositions. The movement was founded in Paris by Andre Breton and launched in 1924 with the publication of his "First Manifesto of Surrealism". A year later the Galerie Pierre in Paris hosted the first Surrealism exhibition. The movement, named by Andre Breton from work by poet Guillaume Apollinaire, caught hold in the United States in the 1930s and was much dominated by the influence of Salvadore Dali. Other 20th-century American artists associated with early Surrealism were Man Ray, Max Ernst, Yves Tanguy, Lorser Feitelson, Helen Lundeberg, Arshile Gorky, Philip Evergood, Jackson Pollock, Bradley Tomlin, Peter Blume, William Baziotes, Enrico Donati and Mark Rothko. As an expression of a coherent group, Surrealism ended with the outbreak of World War II, but its themes continue to appear in American and European art. Sources: Artlex.com, courtesy of Micheal Delahunt; "Phaidon Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Art"; AskART database
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