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Salvador Dali was undoubtedly an outstanding surrealist and a completely unpredictable, extraordinary personality. It is safe to say that Salvador had an incredibly high opinion of himself. In his own words, Dali lived every day of his life to simply be himself. He always had great ambitions, which constantly contributed to the search for himself and his own style in art. He painted in the style of Impressionism, did a lot in the direction of Cubism, painted portraits, became involved with commercial art, and has been an eccentric person overall. All these achievements, in fact, can be largely attributed to Dali’s self-confidence that he earned owed to his development in childhood and youth that was full of attention and inspiration.
Biography and Creative Work
A Spaniard by birth, Salvador Dali was born the second child in the family. His older brother died of meningitis at the age of seven. Little Salvador was born in 1904, three years after the first child in the family. It is no coincidence that the boy's parents gave him the name Salvador (El Salvador means "savior" in Spanish). They considered the appearance of a second son a blessing from God, a child to comfort them in their grief over the death of their eldest boy (Dali 33-34). Since very early childhood, Dali gained much attention from his parents, which inevitably formed a strong sense of being special for the rest of his life.
As a child, the future artist's parents treated him as a savior or some kind of noble. One day he was even presented with a small royal mantle embroidered with stones and a crown, the child was pampered by his parents. Particularly, Dali had the most attention coming from the women that constituted the majority of his household. Young Salvador lived with his mother, grandmother, younger sister, and his nurse. That developed a somewhat difficult character of a narcissistic narcissist who loved praise and attention (Saladyga). A vast amount of attention coming from the opposite sex largely explains Dali’s rather unique style that is extremely prone to subtlety and sexual allusions.
The future artist started painting quite early. At the age of 4, he showed some perseverance in trying to learn to draw, and at the age of 10, he painted his first painting in the style of Impressionism. Salvador could sit all day in a small room where he painted and painted. At the age of 14, the young Dali had his first solo exhibition at a local theater. During this period he persistently sought his own style, practicing Impressionism, Cubism, and other styles of painting (Dali 65-67). The natural self-confidence of Dali as well as his strong attitude towards something new gave him a strong push to take up relatively new styles in painting that would later make him one of the visionaries of modern art.
At the age of 16, Salvador not only painted in various styles of painting but also began to write stories about great artists, also practicing in the verbal genre. Interestingly, when Salvador's peers from the Academy of Arts became interested in the then-popular trend of Impressionism, Dali was already practicing Cubism because what was new to others was already a stage for him. He spent a lot of time in art museums in Spain, including the most famous Spanish museum Prada (Saladyga). From this point, Dali’s imagination worked double-time, allowing him to see art from a totally different perspective, and adapt that perspective to his later work.
In 1929, at the turning point of his life, when the artist was 25 years old, Salvador met Gala Eluard. She was married, 10 years older than Dali, and had a child. Gala became his muse, friend, mistress, and later a wife. Dali painted many portraits of Gala, she was his frequent model, and he dedicated his time to her. Essentially, she saved him from a psychological crisis. Undoubtedly, if it were not for Gala, Dali would not have become such a great artist. Five years after the acquaintance, Gala still divorced her husband and married Salvador (Saladyga). From Gala, Dali had gotten inspiration, which only amplified his self-confidence and talent earned earlier in life.
There is probably no talent that the artist has not shown while in the United States. Here he worked as a decorator and designer, designed scenes in movies, was an illustrator, and created logos for companies (for example, the famous Chupa-Chups logo). He also tried his hand at photography and created installations and sculptures. He painted and worked on the texts of his own novel. His energy was enough for many projects at once (Dali 327-329). Salvador Dali, thus, once again, proved himself to be not only a talented but also a largely diverse artist who would follow his inspiration anywhere it would lead him, without a trace of doubt.
Salvador Dali is one of the most famous and brightest artists of the 20th century. His unique works are known all over the world, even to those who are not interested in fine arts. The artist left his greatest memory in the Salvador Dali Theater-Museum near Figueras. It is a universe of absurdity, created from a world of dreams, nightmares and hallucinations. It is a symbol of the artist's work, the key to his genius. He is also known for his literary works and feature films.
Dali, Salvador. Secret Life Of Salvador Dalí. Dover Publications, 2013.
Saladyga, Stephen Francis. "The Mindset Of Salvador Dali". Lamplighter, 2006, https://web.archive.org/web/20060906040713/http://purple.niagara.edu/jlittle/lamplighter/saladyga.htm.
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