The painting appears in the Art Institute of Chicago’s first show on Spanish Surrealism.
When curators at the Art Institute of Chicago were curating the museum’s first exhibition on Salvador Dali, they worried that one of his works might not be authentic. They began a painstaking search of this seven-foot-tall painting. eternal vision (1936), acquired in 1987.
All that was known about its provenance was that it was a gift from the late museum director Joseph R. Shapiro, founder of the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.
Curators Caitlin Haskell and Jennifer Cohen spotted some potential red flags. Unlike his days when Dalí focused on small-scale compositions of animals, objects, or individual figures, his large vertical works with sparsely populated landscapes were accompanied by a multiplication of detail.
The artist is also known for his recurring motifs, such as his most famous work, the famous melting clock from 1931. memory persistence. Detail is eternal vision—a shadowy figure perched over an archway with a large hole in his stomach, someone in the distance holding shackles and three beans—seemed unique to this painting.
“I didn’t find anything like that in his work,” Cohen told CNN. “Is this Dali?” We were really panicking. “
Then she found the 1939 issue trend Along with an article about Dali’s Surrealist Pavilion, which was controversial at the World’s Fair in New York that year. The description that accompanies the description of an amusement park-like attraction featuring topless mermaid performers called the “Living Liquid Ladies” was an illustration commissioned by the artist for the magazine.
The drawing matched the small drawing and the bindle eternal vision.
Haskell and Cohen traveled to the archives of longtime Dalí dealer Julien Levy to find images of the pavilion. It turns out that the artist had created a huge mural featuring recurring images from Dali’s work, such as a melting clock and a burning giraffe. And at one end of the picture, a mysterious picture appeared, partly hidden by decoration.
Painting restorers Alison Langley and Katrina Rush examined the Art Institute work and determined that the canvas was cut from a large mural.
“It was a shock,” said Cohen.
As a result, the museum renamed the painting with an appropriate title. dream of venusand changed the date to 1939 .
The current show reunites with Dali’s manifesto, “The Independence of the Imagination and the Declaration of Man’s Own Madness.” It was written by Dali after the organizers of the Universal Exposition rejected plans to paint a version of Sandro Botticelli. Birth of Venus Focusing on the opposite mermaid with human legs and fish head.
Why the pavilion murals were cut out remains a mystery.The whereabouts of some other panels remain a mystery, but some are known to be in the collection of the Hiroshima Prefectural Museum in Japan. , no one knows how dream of venus It stayed there for several years after the Expo until Shapiro bought it in 1966.
The museum also conducted a technical analysis of 25 Dalí works ahead of the opening of the exhibition, which led to another revelation.
investigate A chemist meticulously lifts the cuticle of a grand piano (1936) Using X-ray and thermal imaging, restorers discovered what appears to be a hidden graphite portrait of King Ludwig II of Bavaria. Ludwig II is the composer Richard his Wagnerian patron who appears in the finished painting.
Dali may have intended this image as a sort of Easter egg.A curator has a similar theory about the hard-to-see navy blue dog monster invention (1937). Conservators have confirmed that the artist intended the figure to be nearly invisible, saying the dog was a friend of Dali’s who was recently executed and believed to be the subject of a 1929 film. Federico suggests that Garcia may have referred to his Lorca. Andalusian dogwritten by Dali and Luis Buñuel.
“Salvador Dali: Disappearing Images” will be held February 18-June 12, 2023 at the Art Institute of Chicago, 111 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.
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