Will the Real Surrealism Please Stand Up?

Fri, 04/24/2015 - 08:09 (updated 6 years ago)
The original definition of surrealism in the early 20th century was one of facilitating the images of the unconscious mind by use of the irrational juxtaposition of images in some type of special configuration. However, for me dreams have never been irrational. Rather, they have been what I would call extra-rational, meaning that while never likely to be seen in the waking world, certainly not simply a hodge-podge of objects occupying a common space. If I wanted to present that as a painting I would only have to go into my garage for inspiration. For me, the painted or otherwise composed illusionistic space of the realized scene requires an intelligent underpinning of some kind in order to excite a satisfying response in the observer. I call this type of art rational surrealism. It is that classification that I would give to all great surrealist works including, including those of Salvador Dali and David Martsolf. I enclose an image of one of his paintings, perhaps his most famous, titled "The Cathedral", as well as the URL of his web site, http://davemartsolf.com . As a prime example of rational surrealism, "The Cathedral" rather purposely aligns the rib cage of a human skeleton with the ribbed nave of a Romanesque cathedral in Portugal. The painting is not meant to be religious, but rather a discursive study on the relativity of space itself. The awesome uplifting feeling of being inside a great building space is pushed to suggest to the viewer that this same awesomeness should be felt by every living being in his or her own body, interacting with the outside world. I offer rational surrealism as the true art of intelligence and creative thought in the visual arts. Sincerely, Dave Martsolf, Rational Surrealist
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