back-formation from surrealism Date: 1937
- 1 : marked by the intense irrational reality of a dream; also : unbelievable, fantastic <surreal sums of money>
Surrealist works feature the element of surprise, unexpected juxtapositions and non sequitur; however, many Surrealist artists and writers regard their work as an expression of the philosophical movement first and foremost, with the works being an artifact. Leader André Breton was explicit in his assertion that Surrealism was above all a revolutionary movement.
Surrealism developed out of the Dada activities of World War I and the most important center of the movement was Paris. From the 1920s on, the movement spread around the globe, eventually affecting the visual arts, literature, film and music of many countries and languages, as well as political thought and practice, philosophy and social theory.