A technique developed by the Dada movement and the Surrealists as a way to access the unconscious mind. The artist’s hand is allowed to move randomly across the paper or canvas, freeing the act of mark-making from conscious control. Automatism was pioneered by French artist André Masson (1896-1987) and practiced by Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, Jean Arp and others.
André Masson. Automatic Drawing. Ink on paper. 1924. Museum of Modern Art, New York.