View Full Version : Art movements: Surrealism- Dec & Jan

12-01-2009, 02:41 PM
Welcome to the December & January art movement project...we are looking at SURREALISM.

Its definitely different...and I hope you'll find it fun, adventurous, and amusing for the Holiday Season!!:thumbsup:

Here are some artists classed as surrealists. (We have studied some of these before in oldies & goodies etc. So good to revisit them!)

Man Ray
Roland Penrose
Remedios Varo
Leonora Carrington,
Dorothea Tanning
Leonor Fini
Eileen Agar
Frida Kahlo


http://www.artinthepicture.com/artists/Paul_Delvaux/ (http://www.artinthepicture.com/artists/Paul_Delvaux/)

http://www.huntfor.com/arthistory/C20th/surrealism.htm (http://www.huntfor.com/arthistory/C20th/surrealism.htm)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surrealism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surrealism)

http://www.artlex.com/ArtLex/s/surrealism.html (http://www.artlex.com/ArtLex/s/surrealism.html) (lots of images)

http://wwar.com/masters/movements/surrealism.html (http://wwar.com/masters/movements/surrealism.html)

Utube videos

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7lr0SYUfEo (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7lr0SYUfEo)

If you come across interesting links, please post them for us to visit.:thumbsup:

12-01-2009, 02:46 PM
As usual, you can copy part of an an artwork you admire, do something 'in the style of', and any other surrealist practical work for us to see. (Remember about copyright- artist must be deceased prior to 1939).:o

Here's a few tips on making surrealist imagery (from a children's book on surrealist art).

1. Paint 2 unrelated objects/subjects, put them in a setting where you’d never see them IRL. Give your work a title that has nothing to do with it.

2. Close your eyes, scribble on paper, and fill in shapes with colour. Ask a friend to title it.

3. Take rubbings from textured objects and see if there are images in patterns.

4. Paint one of your remembered dreams

5. Create a non-terrestrial landscape. What creatures would inhabit it?

6. Do a portrait and substitute other stuff for eyes and mouth, e.g., flowers, birds, monkeys.

7. Collage random materials. Do the shapes suggest imagery?

8. Paint the thing you fear, e.g., snake indoors, alligator on the stairs.

Happy surrealism!!!:D ;)

12-02-2009, 11:38 AM

Remedios Varo

Leonora Carrington

Max Ernst 12 part documentary

Leonor Fini

12-02-2009, 12:07 PM

Came across this one while researching your list...looks interesting

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xpx12EyWzhs Seems to have a lot of Surrealists in it.

Yves Tanguy

Giorgio De Chirico

Dorothea Tanning

Man Ray

I'm exhausted...feels like I've been in a museum for hours. This is going to be a great art movement this month June. We should all have fun.
Going to check out the Magritte video and then rest my eyes. :heart:

12-02-2009, 12:14 PM
Sorry...put in the wrong link for the interesting Surrealist video it's..


12-02-2009, 01:46 PM
WOW!! What a very wonderful list of videos for us to watch, Janet. It will take me all month to do the watching. Will I have time to paint?? Not complaining. I think its an exciting art movement to study.

12-02-2009, 02:12 PM
I always wanted to be a Surrealist painter...so this may be my kick off :)

12-02-2009, 11:07 PM
Does this ever look like fun......
June - those are some great suggestions to do get a hold on our "inner surrealist"

Janet - oh joy -----that took some doing - posting all those U tube links!

12-03-2009, 01:42 PM
June, thanks for this lovely topic. I haven't even started reading Dali and these folks yet but following your links, I got a lot of inspiration.

If you don't know me by now, you should know me now after this piece. :evil: :evil:

I used only my set of 12 General's Pastel Chalk pencils and since it has such limited colors, it turned a bit Christmasy. ROFL. Perhaps it would be a nice gift for my cyber girlfriends.

Aquabee 93 lbs deluxe sketchbook
Yarka Professional watercolor background
General's Pastel Chalk Pencils set of 12


12-03-2009, 05:15 PM
Here is another piece. If it is too provocative, feel free to delete it.

:evil: :D :evil:


12-05-2009, 10:22 AM
I am not sure about these images for a community site, Sandra....they don't offend me personally. I thought they were humorous, but they may offend others and, in that light, I may remove the last one...since you said you were OK to have it removed and also because of the following...

Surrealists did look to sexual imagery and felt that ecstatic feelings drove some of their art. But in a book by Robert Short on Dada and Surrealism, the author says that surrealism is not about physical sex/lust per se, but about using the imagination to transform sexual feeling into some kind of poetic image/symbol.

Possibly your last image is not yet transformed. Maybe you could work out a better image?

I like the idea of sexual/love feelings from a female perspective...but maybe poeticised a bit more would come up with a better surrealist response. Not that I am an expert!! Just my two cents worth!

I'll leave it for a bit to see what the others think.

12-05-2009, 09:32 PM
Go ahead, June. I won't be offended. I posted it at the figure forum too and they seemed okay with it so far. I'll go and borrow some surreal books next week and will take a look into them again. Thanks for the pointers.

12-07-2009, 05:03 AM
I may have posted this before. It seems to fit in here. Have to do Christmas cards and then will do more on this thread :heart:


12-07-2009, 08:27 AM
Very cute, Janet. I love the little cat. It could be a Christmas card design too!!

Reminds me of the imagery of Remedios Varo...I think because of the long haired angel.

12-07-2009, 11:01 AM
Very cute, Janet. I love the little cat. It could be a Christmas card design too!!

Reminds me of the imagery of Remedios Varo...I think because of the long haired angel.

And my feeling was it looked sort of post-impressionist, or like one of the Nabis, perhaps the relatively obscure Charles Filiger, whose work I enjoy a lot, even though he isn't famous (here's a page about him: http://www.kilidavid.com/Art/Pages/Artists/filiger.htm )

Very nice piece, and makes me feel a bit guilty about the rather frivolous thing I am about to upload... ;-)

12-07-2009, 11:03 AM
And here is my contribution to the world of surreal art. Actually not sure how surreal this really is, and it is decidedly not serious art. But then, I don't take my art seriously. I take it joyously. ;-)


12-07-2009, 02:23 PM
I like it Brian, it is a fun piece. :clap: For me surrealism always conjures up images of Dali.

Not sure if I will have time this month to take part in this, but I will certainly try.

12-07-2009, 04:37 PM
Yes, very Dali!! I love it Brian!

12-07-2009, 04:53 PM
Some more utube art

Vladimir Kush- Russian surrealist artist


Rafael Olbinski


Jacek Yerka



12-07-2009, 06:34 PM
oh, Janet that is a nice one. I like the repetition of the circle around the boat and then the one in her/his hand sets the wheels spinning.

Brian - yes, the world could use more joyous visions. Fun little ditty, that

Inky - hope you can grab some surreal thing to put down.

12-08-2009, 11:42 PM
Brian, really very cute guy. Great expression and very efficient cross hatching.

Janet, very peaceful looking piece. The angel walking a dog. Good one.

As soon as I find a few books on surrealism and study them, I'll come back again.

12-09-2009, 05:17 PM
Hi, gang. Brian love your Dali meets DADA meets Surrealism.
June, I see you are becoming a YouTube fan. Not only can we see art work that isn't elsewhere on the web, I usually like the music that the poster picks to accompany their videos.

I'm thinking of doing one of those crazy Max Ernst collages...just have to find some old etchings. Should be fun....a little Dada. Crazy about this art movement. Glad we have a month to play.

Off to watch the new videos...:heart:

12-09-2009, 05:29 PM
Incredible videos June...they are like dreams or maybe nightmares....excellent :)

12-10-2009, 12:52 PM
I think those latest artists are classed as neo-surrealists because they came in a second wave of surrealism. Around 1970 I believe.

12-11-2009, 04:40 PM
Trafford and June-

With your great research and handy references You both have taken care of all my free time between now and the new year-thank-you!!


Those giant squid-like projections certainly fit in with some of Dali's-and others'- more graphic work-intriguing...


like the contrast between the rough background and whimsical subject!
Didn't know angels removed halos ( but CAN see them taking cats for a walk )!


Very nice take on the much-mustachioed one! Like his surprised expression..

Nere's a digital I did in the Summer as a challenge entry to a Digital artist group I belong to..... I think it meets the criteria of being a Surrealist piece..


Title :

To my Great-Grandmother Immaculata Concepcion Rodriguez: A message from Afar: HE LIVES!!:clap: :clap:

The How:

PSE/ 7 layers

The Imagery:

NASA, LOC and other PD images....except for the eye, conch and truck on stilts ( from a farm entrance about a 1/2 hr from here )....they're mine!
The MAE WEST couch idea, is natch, Salvador's idea....

My great-grandmother fought under Villa in the Mexican Revolution; one of her sons was still riding with Villa AFTER the revolution when Villa was in BANDITO mode and being chased around US Territory by Pershing...but THAT's another story....:D ;)

( I think I didn't post this on WC before....checked my starting threads history, and didn't see it....forgive if overlooked )!:eek:

12-11-2009, 05:05 PM
Chris, thank you for your comment. Your piece indeed feels surreal. This guy feels lost in his environment. The eye makes it look like a dangerous territory that could encapsulate wanderers in the blink of an eye.

12-12-2009, 05:53 AM
Very nice piece Chris. I am intrigued by the truck in the sky. Also I like the Mae West couch lips. Great story about your relative...how interesting to have someone 'famous' in your family background.

There certainly is a lot to read about surrealism. I am still trying to read and view the links. I haven't had time to do any work for this project. I would like to...I think it could be extended over January as well...if you like.

12-12-2009, 09:09 AM
Pls extend this thread, June. I've just borrowed a few books yesterday on the subject and I wanted to explore this subject a bit more.

12-12-2009, 02:33 PM
:thumbsup: OK folks!! I have extended this project over 2 months because of the holidays.


12-13-2009, 05:30 AM
Chris, your digital collage is great, an update on the DaDa collages. I'm sure digital art would have been their cup of tea. Can you imagine?

I don't know why my angel is carrying her halo, maybe it gave her a headache :lol:

Glad we are extended....maybe I can come up with something new. Here's another oldie: Floating Witches


Boats inspired by a Remedios Varo painting

12-13-2009, 05:36 AM
Sorry about the two images...don't know what happened.

12-13-2009, 10:49 AM
Very cute, Janet. Witches gondolaing around. Very nice.

Thanks for pointing out Remedios Varo's name. I like his pieces better already.

Last night I read through some of Dali's work and the thoughts behind them. Geez, I think perhaps half the time, he might be smoking something.

I read also The Secret Life of Salvador Dali where his earlier drawings were recorded with his thoughts. Now that one makes a bit more sense. In fact, I enjoy that work so much more. There are a bit more meaning to most of his thoughts and drawings linked and very skillful in the depiction of figure. In one pix, he wrote a note that now he had to move on and continue to hallucinate away for his proper work rather than drawing.

Too bad he died only in 1985. I would have liked to copy a couple of his drawings.

I'm going to look for another surrealist to follow. I'm not impressed by Rene Magritte either.

12-13-2009, 04:14 PM
hi, Sandra...I know the first name is confusing but Remedios Varo is a woman and my favorite Sureallist. Give a look at Leonor Fini and Leonora Carrington as well amd see if you like them. I also like the Russian group that June posted. So much imagination...WOW! :heart:

12-13-2009, 05:10 PM
Janet, those witches in the boats are terrific.

01-08-2010, 12:57 PM
Here is a study/ preview of what I'm working on. I hope to have it done by next week cause it is for our picture/poem collaboration exchange.

01-13-2010, 11:18 AM
Oh, this thread has been extended to January? Neat. Robin, that really looks surreal. I see a bed, a girl's hair bhind the wall, or perhpas it's a ram turning its head. Looking forward to the color version and see in truth what was in your mind at that moment...and whoever is writing the poem got to link all these thoughts, I guess...haha...

01-13-2010, 12:52 PM
Here is a cross post of something I feel is surreal dur to subject and treatment, posted in the contemporary abstract forum.


Tell me what you think.

01-13-2010, 03:13 PM
Love the drama of this work, pixels.

01-18-2010, 11:20 AM

'Lost in thought'....5 by 7 ins, acrylics on canvas.

A small quick one. I'd like to do a big surrealist painting but I don't think I'll get around to it this month. I have a few ideas...have to see how it goes.:heart:

01-19-2010, 04:35 PM
June, love your Surreal woman. She looks very serene considering that she has a choo-choo running through her head.

I don't know what this is, but I had fun doing it :lol:


01-19-2010, 10:52 PM
Thanks for the link Barb. I saw this on your facebook too. It is so perfect at capturing the feel of that religious type. All the tension of the colors and the repugnance is just crawling all over it.

Fun one June, sounds like you are a busy bee. I like the idea of doing a quick one . I think I've taken a few rides on that train myself!

Janet, what a fun piece. Thought provoking in a curious way.......one never knows what will fall out of the sky, exactly!

I finished my piece but am tired now - I'll scan it in tommorrow.

01-20-2010, 02:03 AM
Janet that one is cool and cooky! I love all those children gathered there.

The other night on TV there was a snippet of info about some pilot who used to fly over Berlin and drop sweets to the children ... in the time when Berlin was cut off ....after the war. Dont know if its true. But your chidren might be awaiting choccies!!

01-20-2010, 08:26 AM
Here's one I did for our poem/picture exchange. Andy has his hands full coming up with a poem for this one!!!! Verithin colored pencil, inktense, pen & ink

01-24-2010, 01:27 AM
sooo...something i'm slightly familiar with.

Acid Reflux(unfinished)-Ink Wash

ok, double image breakdown(oh, btw this is based on an acid trip, hence the name, and for some reason the double images surprisingly presented themselves...)

#1: left rock in pond and empty space around it resembles hand on horizon.

#2: face seen in the center of right rock.

and finally, #3: 1st face becomes a second face staring at a drop falling from his finger, presumably acid.

can't wait to get a grip on oils so i can really make this image come alive

01-24-2010, 05:39 AM
Good one Robin...how serene to sit there calmly with a peanut on your head. Reminds me of me, except I don't have an elephant and I'm not serene.

Hi there Fishsauce. Thanks for posting...a very surreal drawing...love to see it in oils when you get to it. :heart:

01-25-2010, 01:21 PM
fishsauce - that is pretty cool.

Janet - thanks for the comments, this room is based on the one I sit inwith my 97 year old buddie. This idea just came to me one day while we were sitting quite serene...:rolleyes:

01-25-2010, 09:51 PM
I love surrealism, and really want to incorporate more of its elements into my work. I do have a few pieces that I think fall under this category.

Mark Sheeky
01-26-2010, 05:15 AM
Everything I do is surreal! Here are a couple of examples, oil on panel.

It's been great to see others work on this thread! It's amazing how wide the spectrum of creativity can go.

Surrealism was based on Freudian ideas that were shown to be wrong before 1940 which is why the movement, as a way of changing others thoughts, died out around then. I suppose it became a way of self-expressing instead. I'm interested in using modern psychological ideas like N.L.P. for use in art.

I like Tanning, Carrington, Varo and the female surrealists too. Applause to trafford for the links :)


01-26-2010, 06:29 AM
Onewithwings (love that name), like the starkness of your namesake painting a lot, also the symbolism of mother and child. Surrealism brings out some interesting work.

WOW! Mark. Really good work....went into your web and looked at some of your other paintings and am extremely impressed. Surrealsim is a wonderful art form...and I do love my women surrealists. Carrington and Tanning still alive in their nineties. :cool:

Mark Sheeky
01-26-2010, 11:07 AM
Thanks trafford, yes amazing that they're still alive. I went to a recent exhibition about women surrealists. Not to forget Leonor Fini too. I saw some of her pictures in real life recently and they're really well painted.


01-27-2010, 12:16 PM
Kati, I really like the colors of the scenery piece and the mother and child piece is very description. Almost like at childbirth.

Wow, Mark, beautiful pieces you have there. The first piece speaks to me as man is on a slippery slope constantly if not a rocky slide. The second piece is really neat. A heart broken tree fairy or a heartbroken lady forever encased in the thorns of heartbrokenness. I wonder who broke her heart. It'd be a pity if she were a beauty before.

01-28-2010, 05:45 AM
Ignore botched attempt. Will try again later.

02-04-2010, 09:28 PM
Better late than never maybe. As always, all comments welcome. Especially harsh critique and bizarre responses.

02-05-2010, 12:03 AM
This is a really nice piece color wise. I like the half faded face and arm. Not sure what it means but for surrealism, I guess we don't need a meaning.

02-13-2010, 11:30 PM
This is partly based on the setting of Jan I Van Kessel's Seacoast with Fish but I changed it to bubbly water and two fishes only, ditched the multitude of dead fish on the shore and the fishing boats.

Gray paper 9x12 inch
Derwent Graphitint and Inktense pencils - first layer
Pan pastel - second layer
Cretacolor Chunky Charcoal - final layer

While pan pastel lays in color well, it's not stark enough. I needed bold strokes and the chunky charcoal white and ochre were just perfect for the job.


02-14-2010, 09:59 PM
This one is a mix of Roelant Savery's Paradise (the white creatures - the two figures are mine) and a Flemish Master of the Early 17th Century Construction of the Tower of Babel. It's my interpretation of ....

"Before God Got Angry"

Pan pastel
Cretacolor Chunky Charcoal Sticks
Derwent Graphitint pencils
General's White Charcoal pencil
Gray Paper