Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The Persistence of Memory

A large group compromised of friends and family ventured to LACMA, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, yesterday. We went specifically to see the Dali exhibit. Salvador Dali is a rather controversial artist, who was prolific and visionary. He was also one of those rare breeds who balanced the art of creativity with income, unlike Mozart or Van Gogh who died in poverty.
The exhibit at LACMA was focused on the artist's work in film and painting, thus most of the great paintings were not included. However, there is a wealth of his work in film, much of which I was unfamiliar with. I've always associated Dali as a painter, not a film maker.
Dali was master draftman, extremely skilled with portraying an alternate realism, surrealism. During art school we viewed and discussed "Un Chein Andaloo" several times. It is considered a classic in both art and film circles. In the spirit of surrealism the film challenges logical thought. Other films included in the exhibit were Spellbound, directed by Hitchcock, and the Disney animated film Destino.
Dali was a notorious character. This segment from "What's My Line" illustrates him perfectly.

Ernst Fuchs, the founding artist of the Vienna School of Fantastic Realism, was friends with Dali. Below is an interesting interview with Ernst on his relationship with Dali. The progression of the arts is so fascinating. The inspiration and reinterpretation continues on from one generation to another.

Dali at LACMA
Fundacio Gala-Salvador Dali
Fuchs on Dali
Ernst Fuchs
Old Masters, New Visions Workshop

Image above is one of the most famous works by Dali, "The Persistence of Memory", © Salvador Dali

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