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The term Surrealism or hyper-realism was used in 1917 by the French poet Apollinaire. The term meant the way reality can be explained. In order to transmit some of his ideas, the poet doesn’t copy the world statically or naturalistically, but dynamically with creative imagination. Apollinaire introduced the term in a more abstract way, without suggesting a new artistic school, or theory and maybe surrealism would remain a very specific and academic term if Andre Breton hadn’t incorporated all the characteristics that made the hyper-realistic movement famous, like the theories of Freud about the dreams or the sub conscience, especially automation.
Breton quotes in the Surrealist manifesto that was published in 1924, that Surrealism is the psychological automation that dictates thought, with the absence of any control and logic, out of esthetic prejudice or morality. Quite often the term is used to imply something imaginary, weird ludicrous or crazy.
Hyper-realism was borne in Paris and developed by young poets of the time, especially by a team that ran the literary magazine ‘literature’ between 1919-1924, formulating a tendency that later led to the publication of the manifesto of Surrealism. The movement was influenced by the German Romanticism and the British Gothic roman. The theories of Freud influenced the surrealists who were not interested however in the therapeutical impact of the psychoanalytical method. What they were interested in were the dreams as a means of liberating human imagination. Their main reason for breaking apart from the Dadaists with whom they had common roots in hyper-realism, was their disagreement if there is anything that can be become acceptable or not in art, because their dedication to automation and the Freudian theories was undeniable. They didn’t accept the absolute deniable of the Dadaists for art, but they were looking for a social vision and an expression free of any kind of logic.
The rise of Nazism and the events of 1939-1945 obscured every other activity. In 1941 Breton visits the United States to promote Hyper-realism. Although it is difficult for somebody to talk about the end of the Surrealist movement, as its influence on other art currents is continuous, many art historians consider the period of the Second World War as the beginning of the end of hyper-realism. As an organized art current it is finally abandoned with the death of Andre Breton in 1966. Some of the most famous painters, who were only one part of the surrealist movement, were the Spanish Salvador Dali, the Belgian Margrit, Mark Sagal, Miro and Max Ernst.