A Surrealist's Perspective- Jake Cohen

This gallery includes examples of how surrealist painters utilized the concept of space and perspective in the process of depicting the subject of their work.

Portrait of Luther Burbank depicts a scientist and horticulturalist Luther Burbank. Since he was known for experimenting with different plant hybrids, Kahlo depicted him as a human/tree hybrid with roots sinking into a corpse at the forefront of a vast landscape. It is said that this represents the cyclical nature of life and death Kahlo used perspective to bring the Burbank/tree hybrid and corpse to the front of the painting by painting them larger that the trees behind them. He also is drawn to appear taller than the mountains, giving the impression that they are farther away.
The Hammer depicts what appears to be a picture Ferris wheel sinking into a large body of water in a frame that has a hammer resting on it. Letti uses the principles of parallel lines and linear perspective to create the illusion of a frame that acts as a window through which the viewer can observing the ocean.
This painting depicts a face and body on a beach that are missing pieces of their skin. This is meant to be a metaphor for how war is slowly destroying humanity. He uses the principle of perspective by painting the face bigger than the body and the rest of the beach landscape. This brings the face to the forefront and forces the viewer to focus on it.
This painting, from the Ned Kelly series, depicts a figure (Ned Kelly) on horseback, staring into a desert landscape. Nolan use forced perspective to create this vast landscape by making the trees and other objects in the painting very small in relation to Ned and his horse.
This painting depicts a room with a wooden object with various smaller objects on it as well as a painting of a city and a view of the same city through a window. Techniques of perspective are used here to create the illusion that the city from the painting in the room continues outside through the view of the window.
This painting depicts people (including himself) swimming at a waterfront in St Kilda, Australia. Nolan uses techniques of perspective in a more conventional by painting objects that are meant to be in the distance smaller relative to the objects at the forefront. However, to emphasize objects in this painting, he skews the perspective by drawing certain characters significantly larger than they should appear based on where they are in the picture.
Portable Island depicts an image of light tan colored island that is sitting on a ledge looking out onto a big blue background that represents the sea. This was part of a series in which natural objects were reduced to toy models. He used techniques of perspective to create the illusion that island is sitting on a ledge overlooking the “sea” as opposed to being in it.
Bird Bath depicts an old woman and bird/women hybrid washing a bird in a bird bath at the forefront with another old woman and a two dimensional exterior of a house with a bird logo on it in the back. Carrington used forced perspective by painting the women and the birdbath larger than the house. This creates the illusion that they are closer to the viewer and that the house is farther away.
Spain depicts a classical style nude male figure standing over a female figure made of different types of metal, who is lying on the ground. Farther in the background are hooded men dressed up as priests from the Spanish Inquisition as well as a man blended into the mountain landscape. Gleeson uses forced perspective to make the hooded men and the man in the mountain landscape seem further away. This serves to separate the man in the mountain from the main male nude at the forefront.
This painting depicts two human outlines on a white background that act as windows through which a desert landscape can be seen. Dali uses the principles of perspective to create the illusion that the viewer can see through the human window frames and see a landscape that appears to continue on endlessly into the distance.
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