The History of Surrealism
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1989 - 351 pagina's
"I believe," André Breton said, "in the future resolution of the states of dream and reality--in appearance so contradictory--in a sort of absolute reality, or surréalité." The Surrealist movement, born in the 1920s out of the ferment of Dada, committed to revolution against bourgeois rationalism, and inspired by Freudian exploration of the unconscious, has reverberated more widely and deeply than perhaps any other art movement in our century. Its automatism, biomorphic shapes, visionary mode, and manipulation of found objects mark the work of artists as different as Ernst, Miró, Magritte, and Dali.
Maurice Nadeau's History of Surrealism, first published in French in 1944 and in English in 1965, has become a classic. It is both lucid and authoritative--by far the best overall account of this complex movement. Nadeau traces the evolution of Surrealism, bringing to life its many internal debates about politics and art. He relates the movement to its intellectual and artistic environment. And he provides the statements and manifestos of Breton, Aragon, Tzara, and others.
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What is a surrealist object? One might say roughly that it is any alienated object,
one out of its habitual context, used for purposes different from those for which it
was intended, or whose purpose is unknown. Consequently, any object which ...
The technique of collage itself, practiced by Max Ernst, Georges Hugnet, already
signified a victorious explosion of the object into realms where it was not
expected, an effraction of consciousness even in the dark domain of the
I should further object to Romains, who must know it as well as I, that the virtue of
the poem, if not alien at least transcendent to the choice of its words, cannot be,
even with the poets co-operation, the object of any discussion with a judge.
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LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
foreword Maurice Nadeau
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