The Importance of Being Alternative

“Alternative Realism Project” is an original idea by Hyperrealism Magazine. ©

“Bibliography” by Robin Eley ©
Oil on linen-bound hard cover books, 70 x 48 cm

Photorealism, as we know, was born at the end of 60’s in US and has recently turned 50. This movement has broken the rules of the XX century’s art, bringing back the realism in the modern era and depicting a well-placed historic period. In this way, following the Pop Art concepts, American common life became protagonist of the art with typical subjects, such as diners, shop windows, foods and cars of that period. Watching to a photorealistic artwork is like go back in time, we can clearly see a cross-section of the life of those years.
Since then, the world has completely transformed: while at that time, just creating an hyperrealistic artwork was incredible and rare, today, with all the technological advancements and web spreading, we can see a lot of people who’s trying to reach an hyperrealistic effect and we’re assisting to the natural evolution and upgrade of the average technical level.
Any artistic movement doesn’t remain the same over the years, but it needs to evolve towards new directions. Already for some years, many artists started to work to a new vision of Hyperrealism, playing with a realistic technique to realize something never seen before; we could even say that a new version of Hyperrealism is already born. Among the new generation, there are many pioneers of this evolution who work in a very personal and unique way, laying the groundwork for an alternative interpretation of the contemporary realism.

“It’s Paradise On One Hand/Sort of Weirdly Postmodern” by Robin Eley ©
Oil on dibond, epoxy and aluminium honeycomb panel, 30 x 24 in

We can clearly see this kind of personal research in the works of Robin Eley, who uses an hyperrealistic technique as a mean to express his own unique vision by creating everytime new series of absolutely original paintings, as in 2017 “Loss/Less” series, where he created decomposed portraits giving them a glitching effect to represent his thought about the loss of the identity in the web era.
It’s not the only example of alternative paintings from Eley, who launched his career with a very original artwork titled ”Bibliography”: a realistic self-portait painted on the covers of several books.

“Elpis” by Alyssa Monks © Oil on linen, 68 x 68 in

We can also talk about Alyssa Monks, who, in her last series called “Breaking Point“, completely distorts the hyperrealistic concept from which she had started, giving life to visionary scenes: transparencies and overlap of images that represent the perfect synthesis of realism and abstract. Alyssa is able to obtain an incredible optical effect by using strong brushstrokes: observed from afar, her paintings give the impression of photomanipulations elaborated with photographical filters, becoming ever more abstracts as you get all the way up close.

“A Perfect Vacuum” by Jeremy Geddes © Oil on board, 20 x 35 in

Many times in the art history different movements have been fused each other, generating new forms, and this is happening today too.
For example, Surrealism has already contaminated Hyperrealism, just think to Joel Rea or Jeremy Geddes who are two cases of extraordinary Surrealists/Hyperrealists.

“Crossroad” by Joel Rea © , Oil on canvas, 122 x 170 cm

In other contexts, Brad Kunkle creates outstanding realistic artworks with a Symbolistic atmosphere, where a personal and ambiguous iconography evokes dreaming and suggestive scenarios with gold and silver leaf like the masters of the past.
These are just some examples of what is a dawn of a new era for the contemporary art, where more and more artists are trying to create something new, leaving their own personal imprint.

”Eidolon” by Brad Kunkle © Oil, gold and silver leaf on linen, 64 x 36 in

Despite Hyperrealism has already turned 50, we dare to consider it in its infancy: there are so many possibilities and elements unexplored yet. All it takes is freeing our minds from the established schemes by any art movement.
We would like to bring together all these uncommon interpretations of Hyperrealism under the definition of “Alternative Realism“, giving it always more space on our magazine.
Why this name? As in music, the definition of “alternative” is the word who unifies all the genre’s distinctions of mainstream rock music, at the same way, we can consider as alternatives all the different variants of Hyperrealism that deviate from the classic Photorealism.
But we want to make more…

We want to launch the Alternative Realism Project, inviting talented emerging artists to freely express themselves by realizing new personal and unique forms of Hyperrealism.

This project has also the support of Frank Bernarducci, owner of the Bernarducci Gallery, who is already a landmark for new and original artists.
In this way, we just want to generate an important opportunity because we believe that there are many talented artists out there who are able of amazing ideas and just wait the time to challenge themselves.

Hyperrealism Magazine ©



  • Paula Marie Deubel August 18, 2019 at 3:04 AM

    Wonderful article! I imagine that people in the future may feel just as amazed by this art form as many feel now towards the old, classic painters. It will give them a wonderful and clear window to see the past. It’s so refreshing to see that art is truly evolving again in such exciting ways. It’s a good time to be an artist again!

    • hyperrealism-magazine September 19, 2019 at 2:35 PM

      We totally agree with every single word. We really hope that the contemporary art could be more and more important in our society as it was in the past and that people could reappreciate the artists’ job.
      Thank you and keep reading us 🙂 Best


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