It is almost impossible to get a consensus on just what exactly defines “Magic Realism” in art.    Andrew Wyeth’s famous painting, Christina’s World is considered a classic of Magic realism because there is more to it than meets the eye. 

In most art and literature however, Magic Realism is understood to suggest work in which the real world comes into contact with something that is supernatural or unbelievable.

M A G I C  R E A L I S M

Magic Realism (Magical Realism). Term coined by the German critic Franz Roh in 1925 to describe the aspect of Neue Sachlichkeit characterized by sharp-focus detail. In the book in which he originated the term—Nach-Expressionismus, Magischer Realismus, Probleme der neuesten Europäischen Malerie (1925)—Roh also included a rather mixed bag of non-German painters as ‘Magic Realists’, among them Miró and Picasso. Subsequently critics have used the term to cover various types of painting in which objects are depicted with photographic naturalism but which because of paradoxical elements or strange juxtapositions convey a feeling of unreality, infusing the ordinary with a sense of mystery. The paintings of Magritte are a prime example. In the English-speaking world the term gained currency with an exhibition entitled ‘American Realists and Magic Realists’ at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, in 1943. The director of the museum, Alfred H. Barr, wrote that the term was ‘sometimes applied to the work of painters who by means of an exact realistic technique try to make plausible and convincing their improbable, dreamlike or fantastic visions’.

Using high speed photography, we are able to witness people and/or objects caught in mid air in a moment that goes by too fast to be captured by the naked eye.   How can you use this technique to create a scene of magical realism in your community?

According to the Oxford Dictionary of Art: