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Sample Essay on Salvador Dali and His Legacy

salvador-dali-essaySalvador Dali – one of the most amazing contemporary painters of the 20th century, a person whose insanely brilliant fantasy and imagination gave birth to not one masterpiece of world art and became a pillar of the grand trends in contemporary art – surrealism.

«Surrealism is me», – shamelessly claimed the painter, and it is impossible not to agree. All his creations are imbued with the spirit of surrealism – both paintings and photographs, which he created with unprecedented skill. Dali proclaimed complete freedom from any aesthetic or moral coercion and walked up to the limits in any creative experiment.

Dali became interested in art quite early and in high school he took private lessons in painting from the artist Nunes, professor of the Academy of Arts. Then, at the School of Fine Arts at the Academy of Arts, he became well-received by the literary and artistic circles of Madrid – in particular, with Luis Bunuel and Federico Garcia Lorca. However, he did not stay for a long time at the Academy – for some overly bold ideas he was expelled. However, this fact did not prevent him from organizing the first small drawings exhibition and quickly becoming one of the most prominent Catalan artists.

In 1929 Dali met Gala, who has become his «muse of surrealism». Arrived to Salvador Dali with her husband, she immediately fell in love with the artist and left her husband for genius. Gala became his life partner, muse and a beacon of inspiration. We can trace her image emergence tendency in many pictures: Portrait of Gala with Two Lamb Chops Balanced on Her Shoulder, Galarina etc.

In 1934, Dali was banished by the surrealist society on account of the controversy concerning the war. Grand artwork of Dali during that period – «The Persistence of Memory». It presents inescapable flow of mysterious substance – the time. Its creation was specific: Dali derived illumination considering the processed cheese. The picture was tremendous, stunning and subsequently was placed on the top of the most recognizable and illustrious drawings of Dali.

During his creative life, Dali was never restricted to a sole direction. He used oil paints, made films, photographed, produced drawings, molded sculptures. Dali sculptures brought his surreal talent to advanced level: from the canvas, they jumped in three-dimensional space, finding the form and additional volume.

Everybody knows his creations: «The Burning Giraffe», which shows the profound, perturbing feeling of disturbance and fright in the turbulent streak inter wars, «The Face of War», «Sleep» – fragile, unstable reality in the subconscious world, «Apparition of Face and Fruit Dish on a Beach» with metamorphoses, amazing comparing subjects and hidden items, «Soft Construction with Boiled Beans» and it is not even the beginning.

Extremely fertile and highly talented master left a great heritage for future generations of painters and art lovers.


  1. Brandon, R. (1999). Surreal lives. 1st ed.
  2. LaFountain, M. (2016). Dali and Postmodernism. 1st ed. Ithaca: State University of New York Press.
  3. Dali, S. (2013). Secret Life of Salvador Dalí. 1st ed. Dover Publications.
  4. Gibson, I. (1998). The shameful life of Salvador Dalí. 1st ed. New York: W.W. Norton.
  5. Alexandrian, S. (2007). Surrealist art. 1st ed. London: Thames & Hudson.
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