Saturday, May 11, 2013
May 11 - Salvador Dalí
Catalan artist Salvador Dalí was born on May 11, 1904, in Figueres, Spain, near the French border. He was named after an older brother who had died; his parents led him to believe he was that child’s reincarnation. His father encouraged his drawing, and he studied at Madrid’s Real Academia, where he became known for eccentric behavior and his admirable Cubist paintings. In Paris he met Magritte, Miró and Picasso, whom he revered. In 1929, Surrealist artists praised what Dalí termed his “paranoiac-critical method” of accessing the subconscious for artistic creativity, especially shown in optical illusions. In 1931 he completed his most famous work, “The Persistence of Memory” (pictured). Its malleable watches are considered a rejection of time as rigid or deterministic, but Dalí dismissed any association with Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity by saying the images were surrealist perceptions of a Camembert cheese melting in the sun. His famous moustache was inspired by that of Spanish master Velázquez.