JCM312/The Avant-Garde (Discussion)
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- Group 1: Why were surrealists obsessed with dreams and the insane? What does Robert Hughes mean when he characterizes "neurosis" as "the permanent involuntary form of dreams"?
- Group 2: René Magritte's The Treason of Images (1928-9) contains the phrase, "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" ("This is not a pipe"). What does Hughes feel is the significance of this phrase?
- Group 3: How does Hughes characterize the surrealist use of sexuality?
- Group 4: What previously dismissed forms of art (what Hughes calls, "kinds of expression") did surrealists advocate for? Why?
- What elements of surrealism do you see in these films? Cite specific elements from the film.
- Groups 1 and 5: Entr'Acte (Clair, 1924)
- Groups 2 and 4: Un Chien Andalou (Buñuel/Dalí, 1928)
- Groups 3: Zero for Conduct (Vigo, 1933)
- All groups: Hughes maintains that "The [surrealist] object was collage in three dimensions" (p. 241). What do you think he means by this? (Meret Oppenheim's Luncheon in Fur is one example.)
- Hughes, Robert. The Shock of the New. NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 1980.