Sunday, November 10, 2013

Dali, Salvador

Portrait of Dorothy Spreckels Munn
oil on canvas
78.7 x 63.8 cm
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, California, USA

Dorothy Spreckels Munn (1913 - 2000) was the younger daughter of Adolph Spreckels, the California sugar king, founder of the California Palace of the Legion of Honor. She was a prominent San Franciscan and a generous patron of the arts, she lived in Paris for many years, finally moving to Palm Beach, Florida with her husband, Charles Munn.

"Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing." (Dali)

Salvador Domenec Felipe Jacinto Dali i Domenech, Marquis de Pubol (1904 - 1989), commonly known as Salvador Dali , was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Spain. After passing through phases of Cubism, Futurism and Metaphysical painting, he joined the Surrealists in 1929 and his talent for self-publicity rapidly made him the most famous representative of the movement.

Dali was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. Dali's expansive artistic repertoire includes film, sculpture, and photography, in collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media. Dali attributed his "love of everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love of oriental clothes" to a self-styled "Arab lineage", claiming that his ancestors were descended from the Moors.

He took over the Surrealist theory of automatism but transformed it into a more positive method which he named `critical paranoia'. According to this theory one should cultivate genuine delusion as in clinical paranoia while remaining residually aware at the back of one's mind that the control of the reason and will has been deliberately suspended. He claimed that this method should be used not only in artistic and poetical creation but also in the affairs of daily life.