Sunday, July 25, 2010

Art Sunday - Salvador Dali

"One day it will have to be officially admitted that what we have christened reality is an even greater illusion than the world of dreams." Salvador Dali 

Sacrament of the Last Supper

I was a student of art and art history long before I had any memory of seeing a work of art in person. I spent almost two years in Rome as an infant and mother took me everywhere to see art and architecture so I think that is where my love of art came from. Life was rather plebeian after that, but once I hit college there was this marvelous thing called art history lectures with images flashed upon a screen larger than life.

 Landscape of Butterflies

The first artists, whose work I saw in person, were Matisse, Parrish, and Salvador Dali. The effect of actually standing before a work of art is a life altering experience or at least it was for me. Dali's works at the National Gallery in Washington DC were as huge as those flashed upon that image wall in college. Maybe it is like a first love - an experience you were never forget and is impossible to surmount.

I love Dali. Especially his more "subtle" works. The ones that require you look deeply to detect the oddity and which cause you to doubt your sense of reality. When I was gathering images for this Art Sunday Blog I stumbled upon a few I had not seen in a long time like the one below which he calls simply Abstract Painting.

And I have to wonder if on some level the seeing of these works formed a subconscious foundation for my goddesses in the canyon walls. I can certainly understand Dali's reality, and easily read the statement he puts on the canvases he paints.

 Three Sphinxes of Bikini

Note: Years after this love affair with Salvador Dali's works began I came into possession of one of his etchings of Don Quixote. Given how he flooded the market in his later years it is not worth much except to me.

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