I wrote about Surrealism on the Toy Photographers blog in 2017. While I had been using surrealist tenants in my work (like illustrating my dreams), this was the first time I wrote about it. My goal when writing for the Toy Photographers blog that year was to be motivational, to really show everyone that toy photography is applicable in every art genre, in every place art is. My goal was not to be fully historically educational on the topics I was saying toy photography could be a part of. I then and now, regardless of my words, would encourage others to do their own research on topics they’re pursuing.
I was happy with my surrealism post however, at the time, and think I got the point across I was aiming for. With a few more years of art researching and blogging under my belt, I thought it was a good time to revisit and revise (especially since seeing some influence that post has had and wishing I had been more informative at the time).
This is my full post, with edits/additions in bold italics. You can read the original by clicking the link above.
Small Surrealism, Toy Photographers, October 19, 2017
Toy Photography Movement
When photography first came about it was a way to further describe an actual thing. It was seen as fully truthful. Overtime, photography evolved, becoming its own art form (with much adversary) as creators found ways to “lie” through the camera lens.
Toy photography as a part of the fabricated photography movement (seen at least as early as 1898), is and was a groundbreaking departure from the truth. While we may not be photographing the already existent world around us, we’re storytellers finding our own truths within the posed photograph. And I argue that sometimes we can delve deeper into a truthful topic when we create a whole new world that reflects our thoughts.
Creating a world to represent our thoughts is a similar idea to that of the surrealist movement.
Sigmund Freud began developing the theory for the unconscious mind in 1900. He continued development on this theory through 1924. That same year, Andre Breton wrote the Manifestoes of Surrealism to define the art, literature, way of living movement based on Freud’s theory of the unconscious.
The surrealist movement sought to tap into the unconscious and release what was found in total disregard for structure and custom. Participants were to be free of constraint and live what their unconscious was showing them.
The Combination of the Two
Toys can be an amazing medium for surrealist narratives. Toys are iconographic tools made for imagination. When combined with truly looking inside ourselves and choosing pieces we find within to show through artistic forms, toys fully bring to life our thoughts, fears, dreams.
I hope this is at least somewhat useful in getting fuller, relevant info out into the world. My surrealism blog post shtick will probably certainly have to come to an end soon. But I may have a couple more up my sleeve and I hope you’ll stick with me.
I may revise some of my other old posts from the Toy Photographers blog or here. Surrealism is a very apt topic at the moment for both that blog and mine, so it seemed like a good place to start.