Monday, May 14, 2012

Dreaming with Dali..

Salvador Dali (1904-1989) is one of the most interesting and recognized surrealist painters in the world. I have always been interested in Dali’s works because his paintings seem to associate with dreams or nightmares.  Subconscious and unconscious was the drive for Dali in his paintings, he wanted to paint images that were dreamlike into real life scenes.  Dali seemed in real life a character himself, dressed with a cape, holding a long walking cane and that weird mustache that was waxed and curled upwards on the ends. Throughout his career, he worked in the theatre creating set designs and costumes along with his paintings..1500 known to be painted. It is also said that in his later years, while he was sick he signed blank canvas therefore, some his paintings were forged or made as duplicates that were sold in the art world.  The painting “The Persistence of Memory” 1931. 24 cm × 33 cm (9.5 in × 13 in) held at Museum of Modern Art, New York City is one of the most recognized paintings of Dali. In college, I was told that this painting could be a self-portrait of Dali (the arm that looks like its melting-shows a mustache appearance) and of his concern with sexual impotence while getting older. Of course, Dali explains that this painting was about time and space with the watches and long range landscape in the back ground. However, he did use symbolism in his paintings, for instance the ants are sign of death or immense sexual desire, clocks are passing of time while sleeping-unconscious mind. Other images appear in his paintings, eggs-are hope and love, Snail-human head (inside human head as referred to Sigmund Freud), and locusts-waste and fear. I have to say, Dali was a unique character but his paintings show us a dream-like world in a real life appearance. I have always been interested in my dreams, but could never paint them out. My recent work have been based on emotion of the painting itself and I struggle with expressing my emotion/feeling within the painting—showing expression! Surrealist paintings are much deeper than that—subconscious and unconscious is the key. If you like surrealist painters, give me one favorite surrealist painter and why do you like that artist?  I will list some of mine, Man Ray, Frida Kahlo, Joan Miro, and Marcel Duchamp.
"I am painting pictures which make me die for joy, I am creating with an absolute naturalness, without the slightest aesthetic concern, I am making things that inspire me with a profound emotion and I am trying to paint them honestly." —Salvador Dalí, in Dawn Ades, Dalí and Surrealism.
Salvador Dali The Persistence of Memory” 1931

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