RUSART > History of Arts > Salvador Dali

Salvador Dali

(7 July 1887 - 28 March 1985)

 

Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dali i Domenech, Marquis of Dali de Pubol (May 11, 1904 – January 23, 1989), commonly known as Salvador Dali, was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres (Catalonia).

Dalí was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. His best-known work, The Persistence of Memory, was completed in 1931. Dalí's expansive artistic repertoire includes film, sculpture, and photography, in collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media.

Dalí attributed his "love of everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love of oriental clothes" to a self-styled

"Arab lineage," claiming that his ancestors were descended from the Moors. Dalí was highly imaginative, and also had an affinity for partaking in unusual and grandiose behavior, in order to draw attention to himself. This sometimes irked those who loved his art as much as it annoyed his critics, since his eccentric manner sometimes drew more public attention than his artwork.

Salvador Dali was an eccentric Spanish painter that understood how the media worked and used it to its full potential. Dali's name is synonymous with the Surrealist art movement. Dali was a prolific artist, creating more than 1500 paintings during his life time and many works in other mediums, including prints, drawings, sculpture, book illustration, and theater set designs.

Salvador Dalí was born on the 11th of May, 1904 in the Spanish town of Figueres, Catalonia. His father "Salvador Dalí i Cusí" and mother "Felipa Domenech Ferres" provided Dali and his sister with a comfortable upbringing. The young Salvador Dali drew from an early age and was encouraged by his sympathetic mother. She died of cancer when the artist was just 16 though, and his father remarried the sister of his mother.

In 1922 Salvador Dali moved to Madrid to study painting at the Academy of Arts. Here he began to develop a reputation as an eccentric, attracting attention with his manner of dress, hairstyles, and comments on art. The artist experimented with forms of Cubism and Dadaism during his studies. Dali did not complete his final exams, and commented that those judging his work were not competent enough to grade him.

Dali moved to Paris, France to pursue his career as an artist and to be amongst many of the most progressive artists of the time. It was here that Dali met Pablo Picasso for the first time, a fellow Spaniard whom he greatly admired. He also became involved with Andre Breton and the Surrealist art movement. Around this time he also created surreal works that would come to represent what Surrealism was to many people, with works like "The Great Masturbator" and the famous Dali melting clocks "The Persistence of Memory".

In 1929 Salvador Dali met his wife Helena Diakonova, a Russian immigrant that was already married and was more than 10 years older than him. Know as "Gala" she became Dali's muse, lover, supporter and business manager. The couple were married in 1934 and she remained a major part of Dali's life up until his death.

Dali went on to become a great success in the United States. He became a celebrity with his attention seeking comments, appearance and surreal paintings. He attracted commissions from wealthy clients like Helena Rubinstein. Dali and his wife Gala spent and 8 years in America, before returning to Catalonia in Spain.

In 1982 his beloved wife and companion Gala died. Dali was suffering his own problems battling with the debilitating condition of palsy. He then moved into the castle he bought for Gala in Pubol until he was injured under suspicious circumstances when a fire broke out in 1984. He was then moved to his hometown of Figueres, Catalonia, Spain where he died from heart problems on the 23rd of January, 1989.

Salvador Dali was a wealthy artist during his lifetime. He understood how to attract media attention and paved the way for media savvy artists like Pop Artist Andy Warhol. Dali had two museums dedicated to his life and work while he was still living. His works continue to fetch increasingly high prices in art auction houses throughout the world today.

At the age of six I wanted to be a cook. At seven I wanted to be Napoleon. And my ambition has been growing steadily ever since.
Salvador Dali

Democratic societies are unfit for the publication of such thunderous revelations as I am in the habit of making.
Salvador Dali

Don't bother about being modern. Unfortunately it is the one thing that, whatever you do, you cannot avoid.
Salvador Dali

Drawing is the honesty of the art. There is no possibility of cheating. It is either good or bad.
Salvador Dali

Each morning when I awake, I experience again a supreme pleasure - that of being Salvador Dali.
Salvador Dali

Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it.
Salvador Dali

I do not paint a portrait to look like the subject, rather does the person grow to look like his portrait.
Salvador Dali

I don't do drugs. I am drugs.
Salvador Dali

I have Dalinian thought: the one thing the world will never have enough of is the outrageous.
Salvador Dali

I seated ugliness on my knee, and almost immediately grew tired of it.
Salvador Dali

In order to acquire a growing and lasting respect in society, it is a good thing, if you possess great talent, to give, early in your youth, a very hard kick to the right shin of the society that you love. After that, be a snob.
Salvador Dali

Instead of stubbornly attempting to use surrealism for purposes of subversion, it is necessary to try to make of surrealism something as solid, complete and classic as the works of museums.
Salvador Dali

Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.
Salvador Dali

It is good taste, and good taste alone, that possesses the power to sterilize and is always the first handicap to any creative functioning.
Salvador Dali

Let my enemies devour each other.
Salvador Dali

Liking money like I like it, is nothing less than mysticism. Money is a glory.
Salvador Dali

Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary: rationalize them, understand them thoroughly. After that, it will be possible for you to sublimate them.
Salvador Dali

Painting is an infinitely minute part of my personality.
Salvador Dali

Progressive art can assist people to learn not only about the objective forces at work in the society in which they live, but also about the intensely social character of their interior lives. Ultimately, it can propel people toward social emancipation.
Salvador Dali

Surrealism is destructive, but it destroys only what it considers to be shackles limiting our vision.
Salvador Dali

Take me, I am the drug; take me, I am hallucinogenic.
Salvador Dali

The difference between false memories and true ones is the same as for jewels: it is always the false ones that look the most real, the most brilliant
Salvador Dali.

The first man to compare the cheeks of a young woman to a rose was obviously a poet; the first to repeat it was possibly an idiot.
Salvador Dali

The only difference between me and a madman is that I'm not mad.
Salvador Dali

The secret of my influence has always been that it remained secret.
Salvador Dali

The terrifying and edible beauty of Art Nouveau architecture.
Salvador Dali

The thermometer of success is merely the jealousy of the malcontents.
Salvador Dali

There are some days when I think I'm going to die from an overdose of satisfaction.
Salvador Dali

There is only one difference between a madman and me. The madman thinks he is sane. I know I am mad.
Salvador Dali

Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing.
Salvador Dali

Wars have never hurt anybody except the people who die.
Salvador Dali

We are all hungry and thirsty for concrete images. Abstract art will have been good for one thing: to restore its exact virginity to figurative art.
Salvador Dali

What is a television apparatus to man, who has only to shut his eyes to see the most inaccessible regions of the seen and the never seen, who has only to imagine in order to pierce through walls and cause all the planetary Baghdads of his dreams to rise from the dust.
Salvador Dali

Words o’ Wisdom

Geopoliticus Child

Soft Construction with Boiled Beans (Premonition of Civil War) 1936

Figure at a Window

Sacrament of the Last Supper

Cruxifixion (Hypercubic Body)

The Temtation of St. Antony

The Slave Market With The Disappearing Bust Of Voltaire

Gala and the Tigers

Sleep - Le Sommeil 1937

Young Virgin Autosodomized By Her Own Chastity 1954

Metamorphosis of Narcissus

L’Age D’Orfrom Pages choises de Don Quichotte de la Mancha

Face of War 1940

Apparition of Face and Fruit Dish on a Beach 1938

Still Life

Labyrinth

Cuadros 1940

Cannibalism in Autumn 1937-38

Moment of Explosion

Gala looking at the Mediterranean Sea which at a distance of twenty meters is transferred to the portrait of Abraham Lincoln

Disappearing Bust of Voltaire 1941

The Slave Market With The Disappearing Bust Of Voltaire 1940

Leda Atomica

Book Transforming Itself Into A Woman 1940

Bridge Dream

The Phantom Cart

Placeri iluminate

A Caravela

The Three Sphinxes of Bikini 1947

Figueras

O sonho de Cristóvão Colombo

Asummpta Corpuscularia Lapislazulina 1952

Les canib alismes de l'automne

Continuum of the Four Butts 1960

Eternity of Love

Half a Giant Cup Suspended with an Inexplicable Appendage Five Metres Long 1944-45

1925

Crazy Horse

Sankta Lucia (Le triomphe de la lumière)

Sculpture

Galatea of the Spheres 1952

La Femme en Flamme

Soft Self-portrait with Grilled Rasher of Bacon 1941

Dali at the Age of Six When He Thought He Was a Girl Lifting the Skin of the Water to See the Dog Sleeping in the Shade of the Sea 1950

Women with Flowers for Heads Finding the Skin of a Grand Piano on the Beach 1936

Geological Justice

The Great Paranoiac 1936

The Enigma of Hitler 1937

Spain 1936-38

Transparent Simulacrum of a False Image 1938

The Bread-basket 1945

Interatomic Balance of a Swan's Feather 1947

First Study for the Madonna of Portlligat 1949

Landscape of Portlligat 1950

Raphaelesque Head Bursting 1951

Christ of St. John of the Cross 1951

The Angel of Portlligat 1952

Portrait of Gala with Rhinocerotic Symptoms 1954

Meditative Rose 1958

Virgin of Guadalupe 1959

Gala Nude From Behind Looking in Invisible Mirror 1960

Birht of a Divinity 1960

THe Battle of Tetuan 1962

The Station of Perpignan 1959

Unfinished Stereoscopic Picture 1973-74

Soft Monster in Angelic Landscape 1977

The Road of Enigma 1962

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