Even for seasoned art lovers, it is sometimes difficult to differentiate between surrealistic and hyperrealistic work. If you are a layman, we help you take stock and stop confusing these two artistic trends through this article.

A brief history of art: suprarealism

Compared to surrealism, suprarealism is a completely conscious artistic approach. Every work and every creation having its own meaning, in surrealism, the artist is freed from all constraints of thought. The author of the suprarealism manifesto dating from 2017, Mad-Jarova , raises the fact that the approach goes beyond the visible, to the very limits of consciousness. Thus, sources such as the site specializing in modern art define this artistic movement which is still relatively unknown to the general public as a scientific and philosophical approach where matter and consciousness are closely intertwined . Indeed, it is in the Sciences that we find the concepts of dark matter and energy, so qualified because they are invisible and never observed.

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Mad-Jarova has been working for more than 35 years on a scientific model based on the results of observations. She is also the creator of the first theory of scientific consciousness, deeply linked with the reality of visible matter. As scientists of our time are confronted with the invisible, the artistic expression of the latter through suprarealism is very topical.

Hyperrealism, what is it?

Hyperrealism is a movement in the visual arts that appeared in the USA at the end of the 1960s . It is characterized by the most realistic possible interpretation of the visible, with or without critical intention. The main objective of hyperrealism is to reproduce reality very precisely and with an objectivity close to that of photography. Painters who follow this artistic movement are above all in search of neutrality and do not seek to denounce anything: they are content to show the world in the most objective way possible. Hyperrealist sculptors are also in the same situation and their works are also cast on live models.

You should know that hyperrealism was largely influenced by the Pop Art movement and can sometimes be used as a criticism of consumer society. Indeed, paintings and sculptures from this period often present scenes of daily life as well as portraits. Hyperrealism is distinguished from Pop Art by the fact that it is much more figurative and less abstract.

In general, hyperrealist artists use photography as a model to shape their works . Thus, painters can project the image onto a canvas using an overhead projector in order to draw it in every detail. There are also other techniques which consist of painting directly on the photograph printed in very large format. Thus, hyperrealism is an artistic movement which aims to be a mirror of daily life and among its best-known artists, we can cite Normal Rockwell in the United States and François Bricq in France.


the clear distinction between Surrealism and Hyperrealism is essential in appreciating and understanding these two distinct artistic styles. While both may provoke a sense of wonder and challenge perceptions of reality, they diverge significantly in their approach, techniques, and underlying philosophies.

Surrealism, born out of the subconscious mind and dreams, embraces the irrational and the fantastic, often combining disparate elements to create dreamlike or imaginative compositions. Artists such as Salvador Dalí and René Magritte exemplify this movement, blurring the lines between reality and the subconscious to evoke emotional and psychological responses from viewers.

On the other hand, Hyperrealism strives for meticulous detail and precision, aiming to replicate reality with astonishing accuracy. Artists within this genre, like Chuck Close and Richard Estes, employ techniques such as precise brushwork and photographic references to achieve lifelike representations, often indistinguishable from photographs themselves.

While both Surrealism and Hyperrealism offer unique insights into the human experience and the nature of perception, it is crucial not to confuse the two. Surrealism invites us to explore the depths of our psyche and confront the uncanny, while Hyperrealism celebrates the beauty and complexity of the tangible world.

By recognizing the distinctions between these artistic styles, we can deepen our appreciation for the diversity of human creativity and better engage with the profound messages and emotions conveyed by each. As we continue to navigate the vast landscape of art, let us embrace the richness of both Surrealism and Hyperrealism, allowing each to inspire, provoke, and enrich our understanding of the world around us.