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Floor B / 20th C. / European / After WW II  

 European Art after
World War II

Salvador Dalí
(part 2)

 

Dali: Self  Salvador Dalí
Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dalí

born: Figueras, Spain; 2 May 1904
died: Barcelona, Spain; 23 January 1989

 

The atomic bomb took the world and Dalí by surprise. He felt saw it a new approach to marketing his art if not a change in the art itself. He remained in the United States for a couple of years after the war to work out his new approach to his art -- besides Europe had been devastated by the war, this made sustenance and rebuilding a a high priority item, and modern art ranked as a much lower priority in the continental mind.

 

Dalí: My Wife Naked

My Wife, Naked, Looking at her own Body,
which is Transformed into Steps,
Three Vertebrae of a Column, Sky and Architecture
1945
Private Collection

Dalí: Galarina

Galarina
1944-45
Dalí Foundation
Figueras, Spain

 

Dalí: Leda Atomica

Leda Atomica
1949
Teatro-Museo Dalí
Figueras, Spain

 

 

Dalí: Dematerialization near the Nose of Nero

Dematerialization
near the
Nose of Nero
1947
Gift to Spain

Dalí: Picasso

Picasso
1947
Dalí Foundation
Figueras, Spain

 

 

1950s

Dalí: Madonna of Port Lligat

Madonna of Port Lligat
1950
Minami Museum
Tokyo, Japan

 

The 1950 saw Dalí exploiting the idea of the nuclear, which he seems to not really understand well. But he transforms the idea into his own "Nuclear Mysticism" which seems to have something to do with arrays of balls. This period also sees Dalí using Christian iconography. Some of Dalí's most loved images come from the fifties.

 

Dalí: Christ of St. John of the Cross

Christ of St. John
of the Cross

1951
Art Gallery
Glasgow, Scotland

Dalí: Raphaelesque Head Exploding

Raphaelesque
Head Exploding

1951
National Gallery
Edinburgh, Scotland

Dalí: Nuclear Cross

Nuclear Cross
1952
Private Collection

 

Dalí: Lapis-lazuli Corpuscular Assoumption

Lapis-lazuli
Corpuscular
Assumption
1952
Private Collection

The Black
Atomic
Mystical Hole.

Dalí: Galatea of the Spheres

Galatea of the Spheres
1952
Dalí Foundation
Figueras, Spain

 

Dalí: Dali Contemplatin Nuclear Mysticism

Dalí Contemplating
Nuclear Mysticism
1954

 

Dalí: Crucifixion (Corpus Hypercubus)

Crucifixion
(Corpus Hypercubus)

1954
Metropolitan Museum
New York, NY, US

Dalí: Young Virgin Autosodomized by her Own Chastity

Young Virgin
Autosodomized
by her Own Chastity
1954
Playboy Collection
Los Angeles, CA, US

 

In 1954 the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC held a major Dalí showing.

 

Dalí: The Sacrament of the Last Supper

The Sacrament
of the Last Supper

1955
National Gallery
Washington, DC, US

 

In 1958-59 Dalí did a series of Don Quixote prints. These were mass produced and widely sold. It was Avida Dollars at his most Avida. However the results were some of his most successful work; he was working so fast that he didn't have time to be self-conscious, consequently the pictures become pure Dalí: not Dalí trying to shock; not Dalí trying not to be Picasso; not intellectual clever Dalí, although they are clever; they are just honest direct Dalí from the heart and mind.

Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #1
Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #2
Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #3
Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #4
Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #5
Dalí: [lithograph] Don Quixote  #6

 

 

Dalí: The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus

The Discovery of America
by Christopher Columbus

1959
Salvador Dalí Museum
St Petersburg, FL, US

 

Perhaps to be a bit too cynical, this picture should probably be named "The Discovery of the Bounty of America by Avida Dollars". Note that Columbus set sail for the New World from Catalonia and so did Avida Dollars.

 

1960s

 

Dalí: Maids in Waiting

Maids in Waiting
(Las Meninas)
1960
Levy Collection
Bridgewater, CN, US

Dalí: The Cosmic Athlete

The Cosmic Athlete
1960
Palacio de la Zarzuela
Madrid, Spain

Dalí: Birth of a Divinity

Birth of a Divinity
1960
Private Collection

 

With his religious paintings Dalí begins to paint a large format. Following the appetite of the times and the practice of the abstract expressionists who dominated American art of the Sixty's he increased the size of his pictures yet again.

Young Virgin Autosodomized
by her Own Chastity
1954  40 x 30 cm

Here comes the start of the sixties;
and Dalí's pictures get bigger with the times.

   
The Discovery of America
by Christopher Columbus
1959  410 x 284 cm
The Ecumenical Council 1960  300 x 254 cm
Galacidalacidesoxyribonucleicacid 1963  305 x 345 cm
My Dead Brother 1963  175 x 175 cm
Railway Station at Perpignan 1965  295 x 406 cm
Nude Climbing a Stair 1967  98 x 59 cm

 

Dalí: Ecumenical Council

Ecumenical Council
1960
Salvador Dalí Museum
St Petersburg, FL, US

Dalí: Galacidalacidesoxyribonucleicacid

Galacidalacidesoxyribo-
nucleicacid

1963
New England Merchants
National Bank
Boston, MA, US

Dalí: My Dead Brother

My Dead Brother
1963
Private Collection
Switzerland

Dalí: Figure Climbing a Stair

Figure Climbing a Stair
1967

 

In the sixties Dalí also played with stereoscopic pictures, so that if from the right distance the viewer restricted his vision so that the right hand version only entered the right eye and the left hand version only entered the left eye you would see a three dimensional view.

 

Dalí: The Railway Station at Perpigan

The Railway Station
at Perpignan
1965
Museum Ludwig
Cologne, Germany

 

1970s

 

The American Salvador Dalí Museum opened in Cleveland, OH. based on paintings from the Reynolds Morse Collection. In 1982 it moves to St Petersburg, Florida. It houses the largest collection of Dalí outside of Spain.

 

Dalí: Hallucinogenous Bullfighter

Hallucinogenous Bullfighter
1986-70
Salvador Dalí Museum
St Petersburg, FL, US

Dalí: Nude

Nude
1974
Private Collection

Dalí: Dali from behind ...

Dalí from behind
Painting Gala from behind,
who is Perpetuated
in Six Virtual Corneas
which are
Temporarily Reflected
in Six Real Mirrors
[unfinished]

1972-1973

Dalí: Gala's Castle at Pubol

Gala's Castle at Pubol
about 1973
Gift to Spain

The Georges Pompidou Centre in Paris held a major retrospective Dalí show; after the show closed in Paris it traveled to the Tate Gallery in London.

 

1980s

Gala, Dalí's wife, died on 10 June 1982. In July 1982, Dalí was made Marques de Pubol by King Carlos.

 

Dalí: Aphrodite of Knidos in a Landscape

Aphrodite of Knidos
in a Landscape
1981
Gift to Spain

[Greek Sculpture]

Dalí: The Pearl

The Pearl
1981
Gift to Spain

[Velázquez, Picasso]

Dalí: Figure Inspired by Michelangelo's Adam

Figure Inspired
by Michelangelo's Adam
on the ceiling of the
Sistine Chapel, Rome
1982
Gift to Spain

Dalí: SwallowTail

SwallowTail
[Dalí's Last Picture]
1983
Gift to Spain

 

Dalí's last years are a bit sad. Like Picasso, Dalí concentrated on doing variations on earlier paintings, often the same ones that Picasso had reworked. He had always had an eye looking sideways at what other people were doing, somehow he never seemed satisfied with his own vision. It seems as if Dalí were constantly thinking: If Picasso can repaint classic pictures then so can I, and I can do them even better than he does.

Despite the fact he could see his life was over he remained as acquisitive as ever, and spent the money as fast as he got it. He very much understood he could not take it with him. Gala's death had depressed him deeply, and in 1984 he almost killed himself by ringing for his attendant so insistently that the switch overheated causing a fire which set his bedding afire and severely burned him. That's the official story, it could well have been an attempted murder, he was not a comfortable man to be with, nor was he generous. This would be a great topic for a history Ph.D.

In 1989 Dalí died of heart failure. In his will, he left everything to the Spanish state; this primarily consisted of his properties and many unsold works of art. Dalí is buried in his museum in Figueres, there are three Dalí museums in this area of Spain.

 

A Geographic Note

If you have been left wondering where all these little towns in Dalí's life were located. Dalí is from Catalonia, which is located along the Mediterranian Sea on the border between France and Spain. It is just Northeast of Barcelona on the Costa Brava. Perpignan is in France, and Figueras (now spelled Figueres) is in Spain. These maps should make locations pretty clear, they can both be enlarged by clicking on them.

 

 

      

 

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20th Century European Art
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2003-04-20