International political and artistic movement, formed in 1957 in Italy. It comprised a number of small artist groups: International Lettrists, London Psychogeographical Association and Bauhaus Imaginiste. Furthermore the movement was influenced by ideas from CoBrA, Dada, Surrealism and Fluxus.
The French Guy Debord was the most prominent figure but Asger Jorn too was a member. The movement existed for just a couple years whereupon the rifts became too great. One bone of contention between Asger Jorn and Guy Debord was art's significance in relation to the movement's revolutionary political ideals.
From the Italian sfumare: to cover in smoke. A term for soft, almost invisible transitions between light and shade in drawing and painting. The hard and linear contours are obliterated, almost achieving a melting together of the painting's individual parts.
Sfumato is evident in Mona Lisa (1503-05) by Leonardo da Vinci.
Spontaneous-Abstract Painters, TheDanish artist collective which was a national forerunner for CoBrA and whose members included Carl-Henning Pedersen, Else Alfelt and Egill Jacobsen. The Spontaneous-Abstract painters joined up during the War. They wanted a spontaneous painting ungoverned by reason. In Asger Jorn's pictures from this period imaginary beings gush forth from the open floodgates of the subconscious. The group built on Surrealism's subconscious 'automatic drawings' but at the same time criticised the Surrealists for controlling the painting process, the brushstrokes and the colouring too much. The Spontaneous-Abstracts wanted to bring the subconscious to the surface of not only the subjects but in the actual painterly expression. They were inspired by primitive art, children's drawings and themes from the Old Norse world.
European literary and artistic movement formed by André Breton in 1924. It attracted a number of artists from Dada.
Surrealism has certain similarities with early Symbolism from the end of the nineteenth century but is heavily influenced by the psychoanalytical theories of Freud and Jung.
Surrealism has no one particular style but is distinguished by fantastic images drawn from the subconscious with the express purpose that art be not directly understandable or translatable.
Jean Arp, Tilo Baumgärtel, John Bock, Anders Brinch, Carin Ellberg, Mona Hatoum, Asger Jorn, Elina Merenmies, Tony Oursler, Torbjørn Rødland, Morten Schelde, Vibeke Tandberg, Matthias Weischer