Salvador Dali


Word Count: 359

Salvador Dali was born on May 11, 1904. He was a
leader in the new movement of art in the early 20th century
called Surrealism. In 1921 Dali studied at the San
Fernando Acadamy of Fine Arts in Madrid. Here he was
able to associate and learn from such Spanish modernists
as Fedrico Garcia Lorca, and Luis Bundel. He also was
influenced by Italian futurists and the metaphysical paintings
of Giorgio de Chirico. In his early works, however, Dali
gave credit to his own Catalan sense of fantasy and his
megalomania as being his true motivating forces. Dali left
the San Fernando Acadamy of Fine Arts in 1926, and
move to Paris where he frequented the Cafe Cyrano, which
was the ÒheadquartersÓ of the Parisan surrealists. In 1929
Cafe Cyrano featured an exhibit of DaliÕs own surrealist
paintings. Dali was also fascinated with the writings of
psychologist Sigmund Freud. He was so moved by
FruedÕs theory that he subsequently vowed to his lifeÕs
ambition to Òsystemize confusionÓ. Dali is best known for
his surrealist works. Surrealism is an art style in which
imagery is based on fantasy and the world of dreams. It is
thought have grown out of the French literary movement in
the 1920Õs and has itÕs roots in Dadaism. These painters
developed a dreamlike, or hallucinatory, imagery that was
all the more startling for its highly realistic rendering. Some
of DaliÕs better known paintings are: ÒPersistence Of
MemoryÓ also know popularly as ÒSoft WatchesÓ
(1931), and ÒThe Sacrament Of The Last SupperÓ
(1955). These Paintings have become part of the definitive
record of 20th Century art. Dali used many mediums to
illustrate his inspirations. His most popular of course are his
paintings, but he also used such media as jewelry,
advertisements, beer-bottle designs, ballet sets, and
costumes. Dali also experimented his talents in film as well.
In 1928 he and childhood mentor Luis Bundel produced
the famous surrealist film ÒUn Chein AndalouÓ (An
Andalusian Dog). He and Bundel teamed up once again in
1931 for ÒLÕAge dÕorÓ (The Age Of Gold). Dali was
easily recognized all over the world. He was know for
eccentric yet styleish apparel always accompanied by a
flowing cape, and a handlebar mustache, and popping
eyes. Salvador Dali lead a long life in which he influenced
people everywhere he went. In 1989 Dali died at age 86, a
tremendous loss for the art community.