Art & Music: Surrealism
Art & Music: Surrealism (Zane Publishing) consists almost entirely of a narrated slide show, which begins when you open the program and gives you few options thereafter. The idea of simultaneously tracing a movement in both art and music is a good one – what better accompaniment to a parade of Dadaist and surrealist artworks than a Dadaist symphony? Unfortunately, the execution of the idea falls far short on this disc. The slide show and accompanying audio are long on poor production values and short on cohesive content. The issues that overlay the Surrealist movements in art and music are dealt with in broad, disjointed strokes, and the images selected to illustrate the text seem to have been dictated more by what the publishers could get their hands on than by any real knowledge of the subject. The content is spotty overall and there is little narrative sequence – if we didn’t know better, we’d think the publishers were shooting for a dadaist aesthetic themselves. Some of this might be forgivable if there was strong supporting material that allowed you to do your own investigating, but there isn’t. A basic dictionary and a few audio pronunciations are all you’re provided outside of the endlessly droning slide show. Try a book instead.
– November 1995