Magic Realism in Europe

      During the twenties and thirties, Magic Realism was evident in the work of many artists throughout Europe. As mentioned some artists used the style only periodically, although not to the rolex replica extent that they became identified with Magic Realism . For many, this transience tended to occur at the beginning of a career, before they established a mature and personal style. In each instance, research is required to reveal the source of inspiration and the intentions of the artist. Yet for purposes of observation, Magic Realism existed in many places during the 1930's and 40's outside its birthplace in Germany.

       Perhaps the country with one of the strongest traditions of Magic Realism is the Netherlands. This may in part be due to the accessibility of the art of the Flemish masters, as well as to many cultural exchanges between neighbors. The notable artists are Carel Willink and Pyke Koch. Others included Henri Van de Velde, Wim Schuhmacher and Dick Ket. There is currently a revival of interest in Magic Realism in Holland which may yield new and interesting work during this decade.

        In England several artists developed styles that are closely related to Magical Realism . These include Edward Wadsworth, whose work bears resemblance to the scenic works of Henri Rousseau, and Meredith Frampton, whose elegant portrait and domestic imagery has unusual clarity in its detail. Other artists like Stanley Spencer and later Lucian Freud showed strong tendencies toward Magic Realism during parts of their careers.

       In Italy there was a strong reaction to Futurism after World War I, and renewed interest in both realism and the traditional art of the masters.
However instead of pulling slowly away from Futurism, the Italian style of Margherita, 1936 by Amtonio DonghiExpressionism, the Italian artists moved quickly toward simplification and naturalism . This underscores aesthetic differences with German art. Northern European cultures had strong traditions of intensity and emotion in their arts, while art in Mediterranean cultures tended to have more serene and enchanting qualities. Several artists in the postwar period are notable. They include Antonio Donghi, Felice Casorati, Achille Funi and Ubaldo Oppi.. Perhaps the most remarkable painter of this period was Ferazzi Ferruccio, the former Futurist, whose style was innovative. Ferruccio was a member of Scuola Romana, which promoted a style called Romantic Expressionism . Also members of Scuola Romana were Gino Severini, Emanuele Cavalli and Giuseppe Capogrossi . Art produced by all of the afore-mentioned artists may be considered to be closely related to Magic Realism .

       Artists of Italy embraced realism periodically in the successive decades, and many of these works are in the style of Magic Realism.. Notably, the renowned Pietro Annigoni  formed a group of realists in 1947, Modern Painters of Reality, but it was short-lived. More recently, the Post-Modern realist Carlo Maria Mariana mixes in elements of surrealism and classicism in an unusual and interesting style.

       In France the postwar scene was a transitional one, between Danger on the Stairs, 1927-28 by Pierre Roythe decline of a number of Modernist prewar movements and the rise of Surrealism in the latter half of the twenties. Some of the attention at this time was drawn by Synthetic Cubism, but many paintings were related to the Return to Order trend. Some of these paintings also showed characteristics of Magic Realism . As mentioned, in the previous chapter, some early works by Salvador Dali falls into this category. Other artists, often associated with Surrealism, like Pierre Roy and Moise Kisling,  produced works that are clearly Magic Realism . The early work of Balthus also falls into this category. His paintings The Street  (1935) and The Mountain (1938) are masterpieces of Magic Realism..

       The development of Surrealism in many way paralleled the story of Magic Realism . Paris stood as the Mecca for many avant-garde artists and in the late 1920s it became the focal point for the Surrealist Movement. The Surrealist felt an affinity for the early work of de Chirico. Many of the German artists participated in Dada, which was at the very core of the Surrealist movement . It is perhaps due to these similarities as well as others, that serious art critics in France never distinguished Magic Realism as a movement in its own right . 

       As the Weimar Republic gave way to the National Socialism in 1933, many of the artists of Neue Sachlichkeit migrated to other European countries and to America. The movement lost its momentum in Germany, and by 1938 all artistic activity was programmed by the Nazis. Many of the Neue Sachlichkeit paintings were removed from galleries and museums, and some were destroyed as "degenerate art". After World War II, the German artists of Neue Sachlichkeit never seemed to rediscover their magic. Similarly, due to the migration of many important artists, Paris lost its leadership role in the art world. Beginning in the forties, New York became the new Mecca of art.

       Next, Magic Realism spreads to the Americas....    

Neue Sachlichkeit Gallery
European Magic Realism Gallery
American Magic Realism Gallery

Chapter 1 - Magic Realism Introduction
Chapter 2 - Roots of Magic Realism
Chapter 3 - Neue Sachlichkeit Artists
Chapter 4 - Surrealism vs Magic Realism
Chapter 6 - Magic Realism in the Americas (1)
Chapter 7 - Magic Realism in the Americas (2)

Chapter 8 - Contemporary Magic Realism
Chapter 9 - The Future of Magic Realism