Top 25 Magic realism artists who changed its history

A literary and artistic genre known as “magic realism” fuses realism with fanciful or magical aspects. Artists that work in magic realism employ this technique to produce works that push the bounds of what is thought to be possible and question our idea of reality.

Among the best-known practitioners of magic realism are Frida Kahlo, Remedios Varo, and Leonora Carrington. These creators are renowned for their incredibly inventive and surreal works that address concepts like identity, spirituality, and societal critique.

Magic realism painters sometimes included fantastical aspects in their works, such as animals with human features, surreal landscapes, and odd, symbolic objects. In order to convey a sense of familiarity and intimacy in their paintings, they also regularly utilised commonplace items and sceneries from their surroundings, such as plants, animals, and home settings.

1. Frida Kahlo

Magic realism artists

Born: 6 July 1907, Coyoacán, Mexico City, Mexico

Died: 13 July 1954, Coyoacán, Mexico City, Mexico

Spouse: Diego Rivera (m. 1940–1954), Diego Rivera (m. 1929–1939)

Siblings: Cristina Kahlo, Maria Luisa Kahlo Cardena

Buried: 14 July 1954, Frida Kahlo Museum, Mexico City, Mexico

  • Frida Kahlo was a Mexican artist who is known for her numerous self-portraits, portraits, and paintings inspired by the natural world and artifacts from Mexico.
  • Influenced by Mexico’s pop culture, she utilized an edgy folk style to examine postcolonialism, identity, class, gender, and race issues in Mexican society.
  • Her work often contained strong autobiographical themes and often mixed fantasy with realism.
  • She is well-known for painting her experiences with chronic pain.
  • Despite being disabled from polio as a youngster, Kahlo had been a talented student who was headed to medical school until she was injured in a car accident aged 18.


2. Carel Willink

Magic realism artists

Born: 7 March 1900, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Died: 19 October 1983, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Spouse: Sylvia Willink (m. 1977–1983)

Parents: Jan Willink, Wilhelmina Altes

Period: Magical Realism

  • Albert Carel Willink was a Dutch painter who described the way he painted Magic Realism as “imaginary realism.”
  • Albert Carel Willink was born in Amsterdam in the Netherlands on the 7th of March, 1900.
  • He was the oldest son of mechanic Jan Willink and Wilhelmina Altes.
  • The son’s father was an artist who inspired his son to paint.
  • Willink’s first paintings were executed and expressed in an expressionist style. However, he also created abstract pieces during the time exhibited by the group of November in 1923.


3. Antonio Donghi

Magic realism artists

Born: 16 March 1897, Rome, Italy

Died: 16 July 1963, Rome, Italy

  • Antonio Donghi was an Italian artist who painted scenes of life in the popular as well as landscapes and still life.
  • Born in Rome, He was a student in his school, the Instituto di Belle Arti, from 1908.
  • After his military service during World War I, he studied art in Florence and Venice. He was soon established as among the most prominent artists of the neoclassical movement that emerged in the 1920s.
  • His characters have gravitas and an arched stiffness, reminiscent of Piero Della Francesca.
  • Donghi had both critical and critical acclaim.


4. George Tooker

Magic realism artists

Born: 5 August 1920, Brooklyn, New York, United States

Died: 27 March 2011, Hartland, Vermont, United States

Nationality: American

Education: Harvard University, The Art Students League of New York

  • George Tooker was an American painter of figurative art.
  • His work is closely associated with Magic realism, Social realism, Photorealism, and Surrealism.
  • The subjects are shown naturally in photographs; however, the pictures employ neutral tones, an undefined perspective, and alarming juxtapositions that create a dreamlike or phantom reality.
  • He was not a fan of the connection between his work of Magic realism or Surrealism.
  • In 1968 He received an election to his position at the National Academy of Design and was an active member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
  • Tooker was among nine recipients to receive the National Medal of Arts in 2007.


5. Paul Cadmus

Magic realism artists

Born: 17 December 1904, Manhattan, New York, United States

Died: 12 December 1999, Weston, Connecticut, United States

Movies: Paul Cadmus: Enfant Terrible at Eighty, Sleep in a Nest of Flames

Siblings: Fidelma Cadmus

  • Paul Cadmus was an American artist well-known for his egg tempera-based paintings of lively urban scenes of social interaction.
  • He also created several highly completed drawings of single male figures.
  • His paintings blend eroticism with social criticism elements in style called magic realism.
  • He was the son of a father who was a student at the school of Robert Henri, worked as an artist for commercial purposes, and his mother illustrated books for children.
  • At age 15, Cadmus quit school to attend the National Academy of Design for six years.


6. Hubert Lampo

Magic realism artists

Born: 1 September 1920, Antwerp, Belgium

Died: 12 July 2006, Essen, Belgium

Books: De komst van Joachim Stiller, Arthur

Movies: Kasper in the Underworld, De Madonna van Nedermunster

  • Hubert Leon Lampo was a Flemish writer and one of the earliest pioneers of magical realist writing in Flanders.


7. Ivan Albright

Magic realism artists

Born: 20 February 1897, Harvey, Illinois, United States

Died: 18 November 1983, Woodstock, Vermont, United States

Parents: Adam Emory Albright, Clara Wilson Albright

Children: Joseph Albright, Alice Arlen

Education: The Art Institute of Chicago,

  • Ivan Le Lorraine Albright was an American artist, sculptor, and printmaker who was most well-known for his self-portraits, character studies, and still-lifes.
  • He is usually categorized as one of those known as the Magic Realists and is sometimes called”the “master of the macabre.”
  • Ivan Malvin and Ivan Malvin were born in 1897 in the vicinity of Chicago, located in North Harvey, Illinois, to Adam Emory Albright and Clara Wilson Albright.
  • Ivan’s formal education and job prospects during his teenage years in adulthood were unpredictable.
  • In 1915, Ivan joined the College of Liberal Arts of Northwestern University and did not succeed.


8. Alex Colville

Magic realism artists

Born: 24 August 1920, Toronto, Canada

Died: 16 July 2013, Wolfville, Canada

Period: Magical Realism

Education: Mount Allison University (1946–1963)

Awards: Companion of the Order of Canada (1982);

  • David Alexander Colville was a printmaker and painter who continued to enjoy critical and popular success.
  • He was at Mount Allison University from 1938 until 1942 and was taught by Canadian Post-Impressionists like Stanley Royle and Sarah Hart, graduating with the degree of Bachelor of Fine Arts.
  • He joined the infantry and eventually earned the rank of lieutenant.
  • The artist painted his work in Yorkshire and took part in his Royal Canadian Navy’s land in the southern part of France.


9. Jared French

Magic realism artists

Born: 4 February 1905, Ossining, New York, United States

Died: 8 January 1988, Rome, Italy

Artworks: State Park, Summer’s Ending, Evasion,

  • Jared French was an American artist who was a specialist in egg tempera.
  • He was among the artists associated with the art style referred to as magic realism, along with fellow contemporaries George Tooker and Paul Cadmus.
  • Born in Ossining, New York, French was awarded the Bachelor of Arts degree from Amherst College in 1925.
  • French artists painted New Deal murals in the 1930s and early 40s.
  • The year 1937 was the time that French got married to Margaret Hoening (who died in 1998), who was also an artist. She was 15 years older than the French.


10. Franz Radziwill

Magic realism artists

Born: 6 February 1895, Rodenkirchen, Stadland, Germany

Died: 12 August 1983, Wilhelmshaven, Germany

  • Franz Radziwill was a German artist renowned for his landscape paintings in the style of a magical realist.
  • He was also part of his New Objectivity movement.
  • Radziwill was born in Strohausen. His father was an artist.
  • The soldier was in from 1915 until 1917.
  • In 1922, he moved to the quiet Northern town of Dangast and began painting the surrounding landscape.
  • Radziwill’s artworks are exquisitely rendered with a technique of glaze adapted from the masters of the old.


11. Bridget Bate Tichenor

Magic realism artists

Born: 22 November 1917, Paris, France

Died: 20 October 1990, Mexico City, Mexico

Children: Hugh Jeremy Chisholm

Spouse: Jonathan Tichenor (m. 1945), Hugh Joseph Chisholm (m. 1939)

  • Bridget Bate Tichenor was a British surrealist artist of fantastical art at the time of magic realism and an editor of fashion.
  • Born in Paris, She later moved to Mexico for her new home.
  • She was a resident of Rome and Paris from 1930 to 1938.
  • Fred Bate carefully guided his daughter through her work.
  • He suggested she go to the Slade School in London and later visited her in the Contempo Ranch in Mexico.
  • Vera Bate Lombardi is said to have served as the public relations representative to the families that were royalty in Europe in the case of Coco Chanel between 1925 and the year 1938.
  • Bate married Hugh Joseph Chisholm at the Chisholm family home in Strathgrass situated in Port Chester, New York, on October 14, 1939.


12. Werner Tubke

Magic realism artists

Born: 30 July 1929, Schönebeck, Germany

Died: 27 May 2004, Leipzig, Germany

Education: University of Greifswald

Children: Albrecht Tübke, Claudia Tübke

  • Werner Tubke was a German painter from Germany.
  • Taras Prokhasko ukr. Taras Bogdanovich Prokhas’ko (born on May 16 1968 Ivano-Frankivsk) is a Ukrainian writer, essayist, and journalist.
  • From 1989-1991, the Ukrainian government took students’ part in protests 1989-1991 for Ukraine’s independence. Ukraine.


13. Taras Prokhasko

Magic realism artists

Born: 16 May 1968 (age 54 years), Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine

Books: Who Will Make the Snow?, Where the Sea Vanished, How to Understand a Goat, Boiko

Spouse: Nataliia Prokhasko (m. 2013)



14. Michal Ajvaz

Magic realism artists

Born: 30 October 1949 (age 72 years), Prague, Czechia

  • Michal Ajvaz is a Czech writer, novelist, and translator, a champion in the genre of literature referred to as magic realism.
  • Ajvaz was born to a lineage made up of Russian Exiles Ajvaz was a Czech Studies and Aesthetics student at Charles University in Prague.


15. Markus Åkesson

Magic realism artists

Born: 10 July 1975 (age 47 years), Kalmar, Sweden

Known for: Painting, glass sculptures

  • Markus Akesson is a Swedish artist who works using glass and painting.
  • He is a resident and worker at Nybro, Sweden, with his wife, the ceramicist Ellen Ehk.
  • He is passionate about mythology and magic. He is particularly attracted to the forests that make them appear real.
  • Being from a non-artistic family, Akesson’s talent manifested in the most natural ways in his life.
  • In contrast to many of his Scandinavian colleagues, Akesson has limited formal educational training.


16. Maryam Hashemi

Magic realism artists

Born: 1977 (age 45 years), Iran

Movies: The 355, Gods of Their Own Religion, The Day My Shoes Fell in Love, Lena, Unwrapped, Walkout 1, Lost in the Smoke

  • Maryam Hashemi is an Iranian visual artist based in Hackney Wick in East London.
  • Hashemi was born in Tehran.
  • The graduate graduated from Islamic Azad University in 2001 with an undergraduate degree in Graphic Design and has been a resident of the UK since 2002.
  • She is known for her watercolors as well as a pencil. However, her latest works are created using oil on canvas and acrylic, reconstructions, and installations.


17. Alfonso Ponce de León

Magic realism artists

Born: 10 September 1906, Málaga, Spain

Died: 29 September 1936, Madrid, Spain

Education: San Fernando Fine Art Royal Academy

Movement: Magical realism

  • Alfonso Ponce de Leon (10 September 1906 – 29 September 1936) was a Spanish painter.
  • His wife was fellow artist Margarita Manso.


18. John Rogers Cox

Magic realism artists

Born: 24 March 1915, Terre Haute, Indiana, United States

Died: 25 January 1990, Louisville, Kentucky, United States

Periods: Regionalism, Magical Realism

Education: Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts

  • John Rogers Cox was an American painter from Terre Haute in Indiana.
  • The style of his work and the subject align with those of the Regionalist and the Magic Realist landscape tradition.
  • Cox was born in Terre Haute, Indiana, in 1915.
  • At 26, he was the youngest museum director appointed in the U.S.
  • Cox quit the museum and joined The US Army in 1943.


19. Jarosław Kukowski

Magic realism artists

Born: 11 April 1972 (age 50 years), Tczew, Poland

Parents: Stefan Kukowski

  • Jaroslaw Kukowski is a Polish contemporary artist and jury member of international art competitions.
  • He is regarded as one of the top modern makers from his Surrealist circle.
  • In the initial phase of the work by the artist, the mood of his work, which is considered symbolic, is filled with sadness and drama.
  • Deformed human figures in pain, as well as mythological creatures, are displayed against a surreal landscape.
  • The main theme of his artworks became naked, yet the signs of decay and the passing of time are evident.
  • The artist also collaborates with avant-garde musicians and musicians.


20. George Pocheptsov

Magic realism artists

Born: 29 January 1992 (age 30 years), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

  • George Oleg Pocheptsovis was an American artist, draughtsman, and entrepreneur.
  • As a young man, Pocheptsov drew jesters, pregnant women, jesters, and giraffes with four heads in vibrant color schemes.
  • He began painting six months before when he began to speak.
  • Pocheptsov is a completely self-taught artist in the field of arts.


21. Cynthia von Buhler

Magic realism artists

Born: October 1964 (age 57 years), New Jersey, United States

  • Cynthia von Buhler is an American writer, artist, and playwright. She is also a performer and producer.
  • Von Buhler studied art and children’s books at The Art Institute of Boston.
  • After graduation, She continued studying at Richmond, The American International University in London.
  • Von Buhler claims her family is believed to be descendants of her royal Italian Sforza family via an unnatural child.
  • Her grandmother was expecting their mother at the same time, and on being informed of the murder, she was in labor.


22. Aaron Bohrod

Magic realism artists

Born: October 1964 (age 57 years), New Jersey, United States

  • Aaron Bohrod was an American artist best known for his trompe l’oeil still life paintings.
  • In 1930, he returned to Chicago 1930. He painted images of Chicago and the working class.
  • He later earned Guggenheim Fellowships that allowed him to travel across the United States as a painter and record his observations of the American scene.
  • Initially, his work earned many’s attention as a significant social realist, regional painter, and printmaker. His work was advertised via Associated American Artists in New York.


23. Hawk Alfredson

Magic realism artists

Born: 1960 (age 62 years), Örebro, Sweden

Movies: Chelsea on the Rocks

  • Hawk Alfredson is an internationally renowned artist renowned for his symbolic surrealistic oil paintings that have a Northern European quality in tone and technique.
  • Alfredson’s artworks do not fall into one category. However, they cross over and blend Surrealism with Magic Realism, Symbolist, and Fantastic art.
  • Alfredson is a native of Orebro, Sweden, to a Finnish mother and a Swedish father.


24. Marcela Donoso

Magic realism artists

Born: 16 February 1961 (age 61 years), Concepción, Chile

Artworks: El Caleuche, Sueños de Hospital, IX Región El Pillán

  • Marcela Donoso Concha is a Chilean artist who belongs to the Magical Realism movement.
  • She spent some of her growing up in the United States and Venezuela, then returned to Chile in 1970.
  • She was a student at the University of Chile School of Art between 1984 and 1988. She studied under Adolfo Couve.


25. Ruth Ray

Magic realism artists

Born: 8 November 1919, New York, New York,
United States

Died: 18 December 1977, Darien,
Connecticut, United States

  • Ruth Ray was an American artist who painted in the Magic Realism style.
  • Ruth Ray was born in 1919 into a classy New York City household.
  • Her mother was a feminist from the beginning, a managing editor for Vogue, and a prolific self-help book author.

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