Salvador Dali was born in May, 1904 in the small agricultural town of Figueres, Spain. The son of a prosperous notary. The young Dali attended the San Fernando Academy of Fine Arts in Madrid. Early recognition of Dali’s talent came with his first one-man show in Barcelona in 1925. Dali held his first one-man show in Paris in 1926 where he also joined the surrealists, led by former Dadaist Andre Breton.
Dali soon became a leader of the Surrealist Movement. His painting, The Persistance of Memory, with the melting watches is still one of the best-known surrealist works. As Dali moved away from Surrealism and into his classic period, he began his series of 19 large canvases, many concerning scientific, historical or religious themes. In 1974, Dali opened the Teatro Museo in Figueres, Spain. As an artist, Salvador Dali was not limited to a particular style or media. The body of his works, from early impressionist paintings through his transitional surrealist works, and into his classical period, reveals a constantly growing and evolving artist. Dali worked in all media, leaving behind a wealth of oils, watercolors, drawings, graphics, and sculptures, films, photographs, performance pieces, jewels and objects of all descriptions. As important, he left for posterity the permission to explore all aspects of one’s own life and to give them artistic expression. Whether working from pure inspiration or on a commissioned illustration, Dali’s matchless insight and symbolic complexity are apparent.
Above all, Dali was a superb draftsman. His excellence as a creative artist will always set a standard for the art of the twentieth century. Salvador Dali died on January 23, 1989 in Figueres from heart failure with respiratory complications.