Exquisite corpse definition

A bit more of the exquisite corpse history

Images created by Dada artists using the exquisite corpse method


"Exquisite Corpse: Game of folded paper played by several people, who compose a sentence or drawing without anyone seeing the preceding collaboration or collaborations. The now classic example, which gave the game its name, was drawn from the first sentence obtained this way: The-exquisite-corpse-will-drink-new-wine."

--Andre Breton (Waldberg, 93-94)

Drawing by Yves Tanguy, Man Ray, Max Morise, Joan Miro, c. 1926.


"Game of folded paper that consists in having a sentence or a drawing composed by several persons, each ignorant of the preceding collaboration...[eg]..."the exquisite/corpse/will drink/the new/wine"--excerpt from the 1939 Abridged Dictionary of Surrealism, as copied off the wall at the Art Institute of Chicago.

The Exquisite Corpse game (along with some of the most influential and intriguing art of the century) was developed by the artists and writers associated with Andre Breton's surrealist group during the third decade of the twentieth century. Those pictured below and others famous and obscure are re sponsible for the concept and this site is an homage to them.

General Techique

An Exquisite Corpse is constructed by exactly Three (3) players. Each player fills an equal portion of the Corpse canvas. Players are cued only by a small slice of the previous player's work. The goal is to create a unified work of art encompassing the sensibilities and styles of four distinct individuals. Unconscious echoes of imagery, tone and subtext will occur of their own volition.

Click here for your group and emails

Digital Technique with Painter

Group decides on the subject matter or goal (body, landscape, building, unknown, or other)
Group decides who goes first, second and third

For a three person group -

First person creates a file: width = 1500 pixels, height = 400 pixels

Save the file as Group#a.riff
Note riff for the painter format
(For example, group 1 will be Group1a.riff)

First person creates a second painter file, same dimensions as first image. Save this file as Group#b.riff

The first person creates her or his idea of the top third of the image.
When person one is done, she will select the entire width (1500 pixels) and 50 pixels of the bottom of the the first image - Group#a.riff - and paste this into the top of the second image - Group#b.riff. This will result in the bottom 50 pixels of image 'a' being placed on the top of image 'b'

Email the 'b' image to the second person in the group

Using the 50 pixel remainder from the previous image as a guide -
Overlap and create the next part of the image - the 'b' image
The second person saves the 'b' image and creates a 'c' (width = 1500 pixels, height = 400 pixels) image putting the bottom 50 pixels of the 'b' image at the top pf 'c'.

The second person emails the 'c' image to the third person in the group

The third person creates the last third of the image with the 50 pixel guide.

When your group has all the images 'a' 'b' and 'c', email your third of the image to the first person in your group Person #1 will create a new painter file with width = 1500 pixels and height = 1200 pixels.

Name this file Group#a.riff

Person #1 will select, copy and paste the 3 individual image parts in order into the master painter file (Group#a.riff), positioning the layers to overlap properly.
Merge the layers and save this file IN THE JPEG FORMAT
EC_[group number]_a.jpg (For group #1, this would be EC_1_a.jpg
This is the file you will turn in.

Repeat for the next file


Use an ftp program to connect to the artserver
Username: your bgsu address (example:
Connect using FTP (fetch) or Port 21 (filezilla)

Double click on the class folder
Double click on ARTC 2210
Double click on your group folder
Transfer your images to your group folder