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Dali’s ‘Skull of Zurbaran’ Just Might be Perfect!

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 26, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer & Historian   Ever notice how certain Salvador Dali works just give you a good feeling? I suppose it’s usually when the work is “pretty,” like “Meditative Rose.” Or amusing, like “Celestial Ride” – both discussed in earlier posts here.   For reasons largely unexplainable, I’m compulsively drawn to Dali’s 1956 “Skull of Zurbaran,” in the collection of the Hirschhorn Museum, Washington, D.C. I’ve seen it at the Hirschhorn several

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Dali’s ‘Naughtiest’ Painting formerly Owned by Hugh Hefner!

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 23, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer & Historian   It sure is fitting that, until it was sold at auction some years back for upwards of $2 million, “Young Virgin Autosodomized by Her Own Chastity” (1954) was one of the long-time prized possessions of Playboy impresario Hugh Hefner. Who better to proudly display what is arguably Salvador Dali’s naughtiest work of art!    What might we suppose Dali was thinking at this time? What message, if

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Salvador Dali’s ‘White Calm’ an Early Gem of Realism

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 19, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer/Historian   I’m not sure you can point to any other major artist whose catalog was as diverse and, at times, as unpredictable as that of Salvador Dali’s. The man famous – and infamous – for transcribing nightmarish images to canvas was the same man who captured some of the most placid, more conventional, and certainly astonishingly beautiful scenes with his eclectic imagination and steady hand. One painting Dali created, at

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‘The Soft Watch’ Forever a Symbol of Salvador Dali!

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 16, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer & Historian   It’s high time we returned in this blog to Salvador Dali’s signature image – the soft, melting watch. But this time the floppy watches first seen and best known in Dali’s 1931 “Persistence of Memory” are now giving way to a new altered state in “La Montre Molle (‘The Soft Watch’).   In 1954 – the year this popular canvas was painted – Dali was back in Spain

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Respect, Humor, Masterful Painting Inform Dali’s ‘Ghost of Vermeer…’

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 12, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer & Historian   Some of Salvador Dali’s biggest achievements can be found in his smallest paintings. “The Ghost of Vermeer of Delft, Which Can be Used as a Table” is a perfect example. This is one of those jewel-like miniatures that tend to almost stun with their technical virtuosity. Like any Dali painting, print, drawing, watercolor or sculpture, “Ghost of Vermeer” (1934) must be seen in the flesh to gain a true

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‘Assumpta…’ by Dali has both Beauty & Shock Value!

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 09, 2017
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The impossible-to-pronounce “Assumpta Corpuscularia Lapislazulina” helps tells us where the then 48-year-old Dali’s head was at when he painted this spectacular but strange Nuclear Mystical masterpiece in 1952. Dali was deeply invested in his new atomic period at this time, proclaiming he was “becoming classical” and moving away from Surrealism toward a new vision, a new ethos in painting: the melding of science, religion and mathematics. “Assumpta Corpuscularia Lapislazulina” is a great example of this

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‘Explosion of Mystical Faith…’ Exudes Powerful Religious Dynamism

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 06, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer/Historian   Like what they say about a person’s eyes, Dali’s paintings were, in effect, windows to his soul. They reflected his interests, his passions, his fears, his endless curiosity as a creative colossus.   “Explosion of Mystical Faith in a Cathedral” is something of a mirror reflecting Dali’s focus at this time, 1957; namely an emerging affinity with the Catholic Church and what he was coming to believe was the

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Bread Deliciously Painted by the Master of Surrealism!

Posted by Paul Chimera on January 03, 2017
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer/Historian   “That’s by Salvador Dali?!” Such an expression of incredulity is not common among those who mistakenly believe Dali painted just melting clocks and giraffes on fire, then contemplate a painting like his 1945 “Basket of Bread” (Teatru-Museu Dali, Figueres, Spain).   I consider two main points especially important in appreciating this small but powerfully enchanting picture. One, of course, is the subject itself. Bread is a staple of most

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‘Imperial Monument to the Child-Woman’ is Quintessential Surrealism!

Posted by Paul Chimera on December 27, 2016
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By Paul Chimera Dali Writer/Historian   It may be hard to find a more quintessentially Surrealist Dali painting than the important and beautifully painted picture, “Imperial Monument to the Child-Woman” of 1930. The 27-year-old Dali had only recently met Gala, fast becoming the love (and obsession) of his life and, for all intents and purposes, his primary reason for living! That’s how taken he was by the Russian woman, 10 years his senior, who would

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Dali’s ‘Slave Market…’ the Epitome of Double-Imagery

Posted by Paul Chimera on December 21, 2016
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By Paul Chimera Dali Historian/Writer   “Slave Market with Disappearing Bust of Voltaire” defines Salvador Dali for me: an imaginative artist with exceptional technical gifts and an extraordinary capacity for seeing what mere mortals could not!   As a Dali expert and great admirer of the artist, I’ve long considered “Slave Market” emblematic of everything that was Dali – most especially when we consider that he was one of history’s best at achieving the visual

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