We are starting something new at Curator’s Corner! Each week I will write about a work from the Georgia Museum of Art’s permanent collection or one of the exhibitions. I will give background information on the piece and its artist. If you have a request, let us know!
This week’s Weekly Work spotlights Salvador Dalí’s “Angel of Victory.” The artist created this bronze sculpture on a wooden base in 1970. It represents Dalí’s return to Catholicism late in life.
|"Angel of Victory" pictured in the Georgia Museum of Art's permanent collection|
Dalí is known for his Surrealist works. Born in 1904, the Spaniard was heavily influenced by the works of Renaissance masters. He studied at the Academia de San Fernando in Madrid but was expelled in 1926, before graduating. The same year, Dalí traveled to Paris for the first time, where he met Pablo Picasso. Picasso became a significant influence on Dalí’s works, as did such renowned artists as Joan Miró, Raphael, and Bronzino.
In August 1929, Dalí met his wife Gala (born as Elena Ivanovna Diakonova). She was a Russian immigrant married to surrealist poet Paul Éluard. Ten years his senior, Gala was Dalí’s muse and huge source of inspiration in his work. Under her influence, he officially joined the Surrealist group in the Montparnasse quarter of Paris.
|Salvador Dalí, with his beloved pet ocelot, Babou|
In 1940, Dalí and Gala moved to the United States to escape the difficulties of World War II. They resided here for eight years, and Dalí returned to his Catholic faith. This rediscovery of religion was a huge inspiration in his later works.
On January 23, 1989, Dalí died of heart failure at the age of 84. He outlived his beloved Gala by seven years. It is speculated that Dalí lost his will to live following her death and made several attempts to end his own life.
Other notable sculptures by Dalí are “Lobster Telephone” and “Mae West Lips Sofa,” both of which were commissioned by Edward James, a surrealist artist and patron.