Dal, Salvador

Dal, Salvador slvth?r dl?, dl? [key], 1904?89, Spanish painter. At first influenced by futurism, in 1924 Dal came under the influence of the Italian painter de Chirico and by 1929 he had become a leader of surrealism. His precisely realistic style enhances the obsessively nightmarish effect of many of his paintings. Among his best-known works is Persistence of Memory (1931; Mus. of Modern Art, New York City) with its strangely melting clocks. In 1940 Dal escaped from Nazi-occupied France and emigrated to the United States. He wrote The Secret Life of Salvador Dal (1942) and also made surrealist ventures in films (e.g., Luis Buuel's Un Chien andalou, 1928), advertising, and the ballet. A self-proclaimed genius, Dal was certainly a multitalented artist?a superb draftsman whose wildly inventive imagination has left a strong impression on contemporary culture. However, his publicity-seeking antics, commercialism, and encouragement of art-world trickery that made fake Dal prints an industry caused some to brand him a charlatan. The Salvador Dal Museum, St. Petersburg, Fla., and Teatre-Museu Dal, Figueres, Spain, are devoted to his works.Bibliography

See his diary, ed. by M. Don (tr. 1965), Diary of a Genius (tr. 1994); C. Maurer, ed., Sebastian's Arrows: Letters and Momentos of Salvador Dal and Federico Garca Lorca (2004); R. Descharnes and G. Neret, Dali: The Paintings (2 vol., 2004); biographies by I. G. De Liano (1984), R. Rom (1985), M. Etherington-Smith (1993), and I. Gibson (1998); studies by C. Lake (1969), H. N. Finkelstein (1996), R. Goff (1998), R. Radford (1998), and E. H. King, ed. (2010).

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