Art of the 20th Century



 



Art Styles in 20th century Art Map



 

   

 

 

 

 



Salvador Dali




If You Act the Genius, You Will Be One!  1910-1928
The Proof of Love  1929-1935
The Conguest of the Irrational 1936-1939
The Triumph of Avida Dollars  1939-1946
The Mystical Manifesto  1946-1962
Paths to Immortality  1962-1989

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appendix

Illustrations:
Biblia Sacrata, Marquis de Sade, Faust, The Art of Love,
Don Quixote, Divine Comedy, Decameron,
Casanova, Les Caprices de Goya

 


 


 
 





Paths to Immortality  



1962-1989



 


Dali as magician, taken in November 1963
 

 
The Mystical Railway Station of Perpignan
 

It is always at Perpignan station," announced Dali in the Diary of a Genius (19 September 1963), "when Gala is making arrangements for the paintings to follow us by train, that I have my most unique ideas. Even a few miles before this, at Boulou, my brain starts moving; but it is the arrival at Perpignan station that marks an absolute mental ejaculation which then reaches its greatest and most sublime speculative height. I remain for a long time at this altitude, and you will note that during this ejaculation my eyes are always blank. Towards Lyon, however, the tension begins to slacken, and I arrive in Paris appeased by the gastronomic phantasies of the journey - Pic at Valence and M. Dumaine at Saulieu. My brain becomes normal again though I am still a genius, as my readers should be so kind as to remember. Well, on this 19th of September, at Perpignan station, I had a kind of ecstasy that was cosmogonic and even stronger than preceding ones. I had an exact vision of the consitution of the universe. The universe, which is one of the most limited things that exist, is, all proportions being equal, similar in its structure to Perpignan railway station..." (Elsewhere, Dali put it differently, declaring that the most reassuring moment in the entire history of art took place on 17 November 1964 at Perpignan railway station, where he discovered the means of painting the third stereoscopic dimension in oil.)


Portrait of Gala (Gala Against the Light)
1965

 

 


Crucifixion (Dedication: For Gala Queen of the Divine Dali)
1965

 

 

Gala considered Dali as Leda considered the swan. The swan was spermatozoic. The divine egg of Pollux and Helen, twins from a single egg, is already present in the belly of the swan (Leda and the Swan). In The Railway Station at Perpignan, we have a transposed image of Gala and Dali, in which figures from Millet's Angelus (again) are arrested in atavistic attitudes, in front of a sky that is suddenly transformed into a gigantic Maltese cross. At the railway station at Perpignan, which is similar in structure to the universe, again, Dali was painting the saga of Gala and Dali, a thing of light and ecstasy and ejaculation.

 

 


The Railway Station at Perpignan
1965

 

 


Homage to Millet
1965

 

 


The Art of the Pompiers Quantified: Homage to Meissonier
 
 


Dali with "Tuna Fishing", 1967

 

Among the masterpieces Dali painted, among the myths that obsessed him in his later period as he approached the time when the glorious twins of the Dioscuri must part, Tuna Fishing and the Hallucinogenic Toreador -his great legacy to the art — occupy the most significant place.

The former painting, measuring an immense 304 by 404 centimetres, was presented publicly at the Hotel Meurice in Pans (Dali's routine base on visits to the French capital) at an exhibition in homage to Meissonier. Drawing on the artist's own words, Jacques Michel wrote in Le Monde that it was Dali's most ambitious picture yet. The motif came from Dali's father, a gifted story-teller; but the alarming energy in the painting was in no wise related to the photographic mannerisms of certain Pompiers on display at the same show, such as Detaille, A. de Neuville, Suraud and Boldini. Dali's homage was to Meissonier and also to Gustave Moreau, whom he reconciled in his own artistic person via Surrealism.

 



 

Tuna Fishing
1967

 

Study for "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

The Progress of "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

The Progress of "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

The Progress of "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

The Progress of "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

Study for "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

Study for "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

Large Figure for "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 

Large Figure for "Tuna Fishing"
1966-67

 
 

After Pop art and Op art, Dali was doing his personal version of the Pompiers. His invitation to the show announced that Dali would be offering tuition in drawing and composition, from models, and demonstrating the truth of the great master Ingres' maxim that draughtsmanship was the most honest aspect of art. Dali needed two whole summers (1966 and 1967) to paint Tuna Fishing, a work full of dionysian figures. The picture was a kind of testament, the fruit of forty years of devoted searching for means of visual expression. In it, Dali combined all the styles he had worked in: Surrealism, "refined Pompierism", pointillism, action painting, tachism, geometrical abstraction, Pop art, Op art and psychedelic art. The painting has proved as significant as his 1931 soft watch masterpiece, The Persistence of Memory. Dali himself offered this account of it: "It is the most ambitious picture I have ever painted, because its subtitle is Hommage a Meissonier. It is a revival of representational art, which was underestimated by everyone except the Surrealists throughout the period of so-called 'avant-garde' art. It was my father who told me of the epic subject. Though he was a notary in Figueras, Catalonia, he had a talent for story-telling that would have been worthy of a Homer. He also showed me a print he had in his office by a Swiss artist - one of the Pompiers — showing a tuna catch; that picture also helped me create this painting. What finally made me decide to take the subject, which had been tempting me my whole life long, was my reading of Teilhard de Chardin, who believed that the universe and cosmos are finite - which the latest scientific discoveries have confirmed. It then became clear to me that it was that finite quality, the contractions and frontiers of the cosmos and universe, that made energy possible in the first place. The protons, antiprotons, photons, pi-mesons, neutrons, all the elementary particles have their miraculous, hyper-aesthetic energy solely because of the frontiers and contraction of the universe. In a way, this liberates us from the terrible Pascalian fear that living beings are of no importance compared with the cosmos; and it leads us to the idea that the entire cosmos and universe meet at a certain point - which, in this case, is the tuna catch. Hence the alarming energy in the painting! Because all those fish, all those tuna, and all the people busy killing them, are personifications of the finite universe - that is to say, all the components of the picture (since the Dali cosmos is restricted to the circumscribed area of the tuna catch) achieve a maximum of hyper-aesthetic energy in it. Thus Tuna Fishing is a biological spectacle par excellence, since (following my father's description) the sea, which is initially cobalt blue and by the end is totally red with blood, represents the super-aesthetic power of modern biology. Every birth is preceded by the miraculous spurting of blood, 'honey is sweeter than blood', blood is sweeter than blood. Currently America has the privilege of blood, because America has the honour of having the Nobel Prize winner Watson who was the first to discover the molecular structure of desoxyribonucleic acid which, together with the atom bomb, constitutes the essential guarantee of future survival and hibernation for Dali. "


 


Portrait of Mrs. Ruth Daponte
1965


 


Odalisque by a Bath (Harem Scene)
1965


 

Character Masquerading in Pinning Up a Butterfly
1965


 

Odalisque. Design for a Summer Evening Dress
1965


 

The Duke D'Olivares
1965


 

Laocoon Tormented by Flies
1965


 

Homage to Meirronier
1965


 

The Anatomy Lesson
1965


 

Untitled (Apocalyptic Christ: Christ with Flames)
1965


 

Barcelona. Beachwear Design
1965

 

Yellow Astronaut (clerical).
Design for a Summer Evening Dress
1965
 

Tennis. Design for a Tennis Dress
1965

 

Extra Flat. Design for a Bikini
1965

 

Dalinian Empire. Design for a Summer Cocktail Dress
1965

 

Fifty-Fifty. Swimsuit Design
1965

 

Coming Back. Design for a Beach Two-piece
1965


 

Philipp II Taking Communion
1965


 

Night in the Hotel (Abstract in Black and White)
1965


 

Michelin's Slave - Can Be Used as a Car
1965


 

The Chalice of Life
1965


 

Moses and the Pharaoh
1966



 

Figure Climbing a Stair
1967


 

The Flower Show - Carnation
1967


 

Gala
1967
 

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See also:
"Dali illustre Casanova" (Dali Illustrates Casanova), 1967


 

One of 14 graphics for "Dali illustre Casanova" (Dali Illustrates Casanova)
1967
 


See also:
"Dali illustre Casanova" (Dali Illustrates Casanova), 1967


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The Mountains of Cap Creus on the March
1967



 

Dali-Flower
1967


 

Swan-Elephant and Serpent - Can Be Used as an Ashtray
1967

 

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