10 Salvador Dali Facts

Salvador Dali was a Spanish surrealist painter. Here are some facts about him.

  • Salvador Dali was born on 11th May 1904 in Figueres, Spain.
  • His brother, also called Salvador, had died nine months before Dali was born. Dali, encouraged by his parents, believed he was the reincarnation of his brother, and this theme is sometimes featured in his work.

  • Salvador went to drawing school and the first exhibition of his work (a series of charcoal drawings) took place in 1917 (organised by his father).
  • Dali’s mother died in 1921 of breast cancer. Dali was just sixteen and was severely affected by his mother’s passing.
  • Dali moved to Madrid to study at the School of Fine Arts. He experimented with Cubism, and also gained a reputation for being a bit eccentric.
  • He was expelled from the School of Fine Arts for his role in causing ‘an unrest’, and he visited Paris, meeting Pablo Picasso.
  • Dali joined the Surrealist group in the Montparnasse quarter of Paris.
  • He painted The Persistence of Memory, one his most famous works, in 1931. It features the classic surrealist image of the melting clock.
  • Dali and his wife, Gala, moved to America to escape World War 2. They lived there for eight years.
  • He returned to Paris after WW2 and began to experiment with other forms and different techniques. He used optical illusions and visual puns, and he became interested in mathematics and science – particularly the structure of DNA.
  • Dali designed the Chupa Chups logo.
  • Dali died of heart failure on 23rd January 1989. He was 84.
  • Several images often appear in Dali’s surrealist paintings. These include: melting clocks, elephants, eggs, ants, snails and locusts.
  • Salvador Dali produced more than 1500 paintings in his lifetime. He also created numerous drawings, illustrations, sculptures, short films, books and lithographs.

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