A simulacrum is a representation or copy of a person or thing.
Literary critic Fredric Jameson illustrates the concept of an artistic simulacrum by pointing to photorealism. In photorealism, a painting is crafted by replicating a photograph, which, in turn, is a copy of the actual object. Other art forms that explore the realm of simulacra encompass trompe-l'œil, pop art, Italian neorealism, and the French New Wave.
In postmodernist discourse, particularly in the works of Gilles Deleuze and Jean Baudrillard, the term has been brought back to discussions concerning the connection between an original work of art and its reproduction. According to Baudrillard, the simulacrum becomes more important than the original, rendering the original irrelevant.