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Photography and surrealism

Man Rays photograph, The Enigma of Isidore Ducasse () in the Preface to La Rvolution surraliste, no. , December .

See Linda Williams on surrealism and lm in her Figures of Desire (Oxford: University of California Press, ), where she refers to Metzs use of the prolmic.

not produced by any photographic trick or technique in the camera or darkroom. The term prophotographic is a neologism of the lm theory term prolmic used by Christian Metz. Metz uses prolmic to describe special cinematic effects (an actual car crash or ET are prolmic effects) achieved prior to the lmic moment and not dependent on special in-camera or post-production techniques.0 Such a distinction would appear simply to displace the issue of dening the surreal or surreality away from the photograph itself on to the object(s) shown. This is indeed the case, but it is nevertheless an important distinction because it helps to show where a surreal effect is achieved. For example, the picture in the centre of the Preface, in the rst issue of La Rvolution surraliste (no. , December ) depicts something that we cannot see