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Student Surrealist Art Exhibit: Waking Dreams

Student Surrealist Art Exhibit

The Dali Museum’s Student Surrealist Art Exhibit 2019: “Waking Dreams”
Pinellas County: January 12-March 3, 2019
Hillsborough County: 
March 16-May 5, 2019
Florida Statewide: 
May 18-August 25, 2019

NEW Check out The Dali Museum’s new video resources for the Student Surrealist Art Exhibit!

“Surrealism: The Big Ideas
Closed caption version

“How to Make Surrealist Art
Closed caption version

“Why Teach Surrealist Art”

“Waking dreams are as important, as unpredictable & as powerful as those we have when we’re asleep.”
– Luis Bunuel, My Last Sigh: The Autobiography of Luis Bunuel, surrealist filmmaker

Sigmund Freud likened the mind to an iceberg. The conscious part of the mind, which contains the thoughts we are aware of, is like the tip of the iceberg. The bulk of the iceberg, beneath the water’s surface, represents the unconscious mind. The unconscious mind contains the thoughts we cannot control and of which we are completely unaware. However, Freud theorized that the unconscious mind reveals itself in dreams.

The idea of the unconscious is the basis of Surrealism. The Surrealists believed that ignoring the unconscious mind was harmful to society. They wanted to release the suppressed thoughts and feelings of their unconscious. Influenced by Freud, the Surrealists looked to their dreams to uncover these ideas, and they used art and writing to express what they found.

The Surrealists found that waking dreams could be more vivid and more powerful than our usual sleeping dreams. Reality becomes distorted and hallucinatory. In waking dreams, you don’t fully fall asleep but are somewhere between wakefulness and sleep. During this transition, the brain is more fluid, open to making connections between seemingly unrelated ideas, and consequently, can stimulate creativity.

We invite your students to imagine what might be hidden in their unconscious minds. Think about recurring dreams, dreams from childhood, or the imaginings while dozing off. Use surrealist techniques like transformation, dislocation and symbolism to translate these visions.

Please read the guidelines carefully; some information has changed. Links to “Surrealism: The Big Ideas” and “How to Make Surrealist Art” are also in the guidelines.

Pinellas County Guidelines
Digital submissions due: November 16, 2018

Hillsborough Guidelines
Submissions due: February 21, 2019

Statewide Guidelines
Digital submissions due: March 29, 2019


View photos of 2018’s Student Surrealist Art Exhibit


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