January's theme is Surreal
When you look at the artwork of Frida Kahlo or Salvador Dalí, there’s an element of surprise. Why does it feel familiar yet also otherworldly?Surrealists sought to break free from the shackles of the rational mind and dive into the deep end of the unconscious. The canvas, then, became a mirror for what emerged out of that process. This movement was inspired by events in the 1920s on the heels of the first world war and continues to influence artists, writers, photographers, and filmmakers. This cultural and artistic movement ushered in new techniques that helped humans expand their minds.
Today, we recognize a sense of the surreal in unexpected moments in daily life. Art exhibits like Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Room are becoming readily available, encouraging people to immerse themselves in experiences that break reality. A ballet performance or a silent meditation retreat can be a dreamlike experience.
Whether we experience a surreal moment or dabble in processes like drawing without thinking or writing without self-editing, there’s something to be learned about ourselves and what lingers under the hood of our desires to keep life orderly and controlled.