Monday, March 26, 2012

Salvador Dali

As soon as I heard about this assignment, I knew exactly whom I wanted to research: Salvador Dali. In fact, I had only rediscovered this artist's work just a few days before this class began. Dali was an eccentric character whose imagination and personality came screaming through his artwork. His surrealist drawing style is attractive to the dreamer in all of us, and I tend to get a hyper-sexualized, almost violent vibe from his drawings and paintings. Dali combines beautiful uplifting fantasy imagery with that of a more dark and twisted brand, constantly walking the thin line between dream and nightmare. The main reason I identify with Dali so much is that his style is the closest, in terms of subject matter, to mine. I’ve pushed myself to draw from observation in this class and make my weaknesses grow into strengths, but the work I did before enrolling this semester often looks very similar to a Dali piece. Another thing I admire about Salvador Dali is his confidence, a swagger that most would deem as utter arrogance. I remember a quote in which he claimed, and I paraphrase, how much pleasure he gained from just being Salvador Dali. He also swore he didn’t do drugs, but that he in fact was drugs, which I found hilarious. Author Robert Descharnes described Dali’s popularity, or rather the lack thereof, by saying this “Dali’s genius, which would have been freely acknowledged had it flowered in the Renaissance, is today so out of the ordinary that it provokes our modern world of average bureaucrats. There are still many who misunderstand this provocation and protest that he is crazy.” (Descharnes) Here are a few of Dali’s pieces that I found for the first time in Lilly, and enjoyed. 
The Enigma of William Tell
Suburbs of the Paranoiac-Critical Town: Afternoon on the Outskirts of European History
Autumn Cannibalism

Work Cited : "Salvador Dali" by Robert Descharnes, Translated by Eleanor R. Morse

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