Realism comprises authentic and independent aspects of the natural world, which individuals comprehend through sensory perception. The term icon describes a realistic person or realistic object, categorically perceived by a population as representative of a specific human activity or an object that bears significance to human activity. Iconic realism, then, involves the placement of an icon within the midst of a unique realistic setting, out of place for this particular icon, creating a static coalescence of the icon with the designated realism. Since both the icon and the realistic setting represent an aspect of the culture, the resulting dissonance between these two entities is the catalyst that generates enlightenment of a cultural dilemma.
An example of iconic realism would be an artist’s placement of Jesus the Christ or a representation of this icon of Christian philosophy, in the midst of a shopping mall on a Sunday afternoon, an aspect of the real world. This individual in this setting would generate enlightenment of the cultural dilemma, stirring a new consciousness that exists within cognitive dissonance of Christianity and activity within the designated reality of materialism during this particular time in history and locale.
Touchdown Jesus @ University of Notre Dame, Indiana, U.S.A.