10 February 2013

Salvador Dali and his nymphomaniac wife .

According to a short editorial in New Scientist (2 February 2013) Salvador Dali had a very unorthodox albeit very simple method of mental refreshment.
He would sit with a key in one hand, poised above a metal plate placed on the floor, and let sleep take him. As soon as he began to slumber in earnest, the key would slip from his fingers and clang against the plate - waking him immediately.
Dali declared that this method provided all the rest he needed before getting on with a new painting . It seems to me that he probably was in the stage 2 of his sleep. Because this is the perfect stage for naps. Lasting 20 minutes or so, it restores fatigued muscles and replenishes alertness. Confirm the science of sleep if you are awakened during this stage, you will feel refreshed and happy. But it is very impossible that you will have dreams during this stage. The majority of dreams happens after the stage 4 of deep sleep in REM stage. I often put down my dreams on paper, in writing or drawings. I memorise and repeat them time after time to prevent them escaping from my unconscious memory before they are printed in my conscious memory. Of course I only bother with the most unusual, impossible, shocking or surreal dreams. The content of Dali's paintings has probably nothing to do with his dreams, in contradiction to the widely repeated truisms:
'What inspired Salvador Dali? - his dreams and his wife'.
The first answer is a nonsensical one, the second is a true one. His wife Gala was not only a huge inspiration for his paintings but also a gigantic, dominating force behind his productions, his popularity and his ultimate fate as a fallen genius. Think about it: Dali was a master painter, with his absolutely amazing, conscientious techniques; with his vulnerability behind his moustache; with his genuine spirituality; with his homosexual inclinations; without his wife, without Gala!

I can imagine all the great paintings he would have made were it not for the devil woman - His wife. Maybe he would have only been discovered posthumously  but for the greatness of his art, and art in general, who cares about that? Dali as a brilliant genius and as a serious artist existed between 1929 and 1939. Full stop. After that period Dali's commercial success, huge as it was, coincided with his decline as a serious artist. Full stop!

Here are some of his best paintings. I didn't include his best painting 'The Persistence of Memory' from 1931 only because I couldn't find a good image of it on WWW. I do have a few books included this painting but they are too big for my scanner.

Sorry for that. You can find a good image of this painting at Wikpedia.

Another excellent work is the Morphological Echo - consisting of two oil on panel paintings made between 1934 and 1936. Hereby the two images:

Lugubrious Game - 1929

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