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Lecture Series

8, 10, 15, 17 October 2013
Image of the Lecture

The participants summarise their talks

  • Art from the Past: Surrealism and Fantastic Art
    Juan José Lahuerta
    The vision that surrealism projects over the art of the past is "retroactive". Surrealism writes a story of art that is chronologically inverted, starting with modern art and going back to the past, in way that the past is presented as the culmination of the present, and not the other way around. And in this operation of appropriating the past, that which they call "fantastic art" will have an essential importance, this includes authors of cult art like Paolo Uccello or Bosch, to the art of children, naives, or mad people... 
  • Surrealism on Stage: Theatre and Surrealism
    Luis d'Ors
    Luis d´Ors proposes, based on his experience as a man of theatre, the need to review the scenic surrealist vanguard with the aim of discovering new ways of making theatre in the present. Through a review of the surrealist dramaturgy resources, with its antecedents in Dadaism, and illustrated through examples, d´Ors will not only analyze the inheritance of those proposals of the previous century, but will also propose a mode in which those marvelous ideas -that were hardly materialized in works- provide clues that allow addressing a new "poetical theatre" exploring the rich and unknown interior world of humans. A surrealist theatre for the present.
  • Surrealism and the Moving Image: Surrealism and Film
    Román Gubern

    The members of the Surrealist group were moviegoers, and films like Fantômas (1913), Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (1921), and King Kong (1933) fascinated them. These were true "dreams over the screen", or as Jean Goudal would write in 1925 a "conscious hallucination". But the production of movies specifically Surrealist, associated with the movement created by André Breton in 1924, resulted controversial. The most strict and fussy historians assert that there were only two or three truly surrealistic films. The first one would be La coquille et le clergyman (1928) by Germaine Dulac and based on a script by Antonin Artaud, a writer very close to the Surrealists, but who was disappointed with the final result -he pretended "reproducing the mechanic of dream, without being a real dream"-. Its premiere was nosily sabotaged by some Surrealist friends attending the inauguration session. Due to this, many say that the first orthodox Surrealist film was really the creation of two spaniards, the Aragonese Luis Buñuel and the Catalonian Salvador Dalí, the short film with the capricious title Un perro andaluz (1929). Buñuel directed it in Paris using a script where the ideas of his friends were present, friends he had met in the busy Residencia de Estudiantes of Madrid. Breton himself, together with his colleagues, understood it this way and immediately admitted both of the artists among their ranks.

     Un perro andaluz poetically rambles in a very unconventional way around the topic of sexual desire and frustration -similarly to Germaine Dula's movie-, but the next film by Buñuel, already on the verge of sound film and titled La edad de oro (1930), was a virulent ideological manifesto of the Surrealist ideas with an all-out attack to the bourgeois institutions -Church, Homeland, Family-, reaching the point that after a tumultuous projection it was forbidden in December 1930, and all copies were seized by the police. This prohibition was in place in France until 1960. The scandal of the La edad de oro episode was included among the most hot political debates within the core of the group, and lead some of its members -like it was the case of Buñuel- to affiliate to the Communist Party, causing Breton great discontent. Breton attempted keeping his independence, although ultimately he would end up sympathizing with Trotskyism. 

  • An Inventory of Surrealism: Dreams, Visions, Ghosts, Monsters, Demons and other Imaginary Creatures
    María Tausiet
    Although surrealism appeared in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, manifesting especially in the 1920's and 1930's, its antecedents date from much earlier. A good example of of "surreality", "over-reality" or "superior reality" that its defenders already tried to capture and reflect can be found in the 5th century BC. Based on the famous assertion assigned to Heraclitus, the difference between vigil and sleep, and in general between any kind of opposites, is only apparent: "Being alive and dead, awaken or asleep, being young and old: all of it exists at the same time within us". The prominence of imagination, of dreams and visions, of the emotional world commonly represented in monstrous and ghostly images, which the surrealists claimed, can already be observed in some artists of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance like for example Brueghel or Bosch. These artists, would at the same time inspire many representatives of romanticism, establishing this way a chain of successive influences that the own surrealist would accept as the precedents of their movement.
Ver vídeo: Surrealismos…
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