A study of the work of Dalí, reveals some symbols consistently present in all its work. it’s fetish objects that apparently have little in common: crutches, urchins, ants, bread …

Dalí uses these symbols in order to make more significant message of his painting. The contrast of a hard shell and a soft inside is the heart of his thought and his art. This indoor outdoor contrast / (hard / soft) is consistent with the psychological notion that individuals make defenses (hard) all around the vulnerable psyche (flexible). Dalí was very familiar with the work of Freud and his followers, though his iconography absolutely no drift of psychoanalytic thought.


They have the power to penetrate the heavens, to communicate with God and accomplish and mystical union concern as the painter. The figures of angels painted by Dalí often borrow traits Gala, incarnation, for Dalí, purity and nobility.


It may be the sole support of a figure or the necessary support of a unable to stand alone form. Dalí discovered it as a child in the attic of his father’s house. He takes it and will never part with it. This object gave him a confidence and arrogance that he had never been able to. In the short Dictionary of Surrealism (1938), Dalí gives the following definition: “Wooden support derived from Cartesian philosophy Generally used to serve as support for the tenderness of soft structures..”


The Dalí elephants are usually represented with the long legs of desire invisible, multi-link, on their backs the obelisk symbol of power and domination. The weight supported by the frail legs of the animal evokes weightlessness.


The snail is linked to a landmark event in the life of Dalí: his meeting with Sigmund Freud. Dalí believed that nothing just happens by accident, he was captivated by the vision of a snail on a bicycle outside Freud’s house. The link is then made by him between a human head and the snail, he associated especially at the head of Freud. As for the egg, the outer part of the shell (hard) and the body (soft) inside the snail fascinated him and the geometry of the curves enchanted.


Symbol of decay and decomposition. Dalí met ants the first time as a child, watching the decomposed remains of small animals eaten by them. He watched with fascination and repulsion, and continued to use them in his work, as a symbol of decadence and ephemeral.


Dalí often said, “the materialization of time flexibility and indivisibility of space … This is a fluid.” The unexpected softness of the watch also represents the psychological aspect by which the speed of time, although accurate in its scientific definition, can greatly vary in human perception. The idea came to him after a meal while gazing at the remains of a runny Camembert. He decided to paint the landscape that served as his backdrop two soft watches, one of which miserably hanging from the branch of an olive tree.


Christian symbol of the resurrection of Christ and the emblem of purity and perfection. The egg recalls in appearance and minerality symbolic dear to Dalí, that of the previous life, intrauterine and rebirth.


His OURSIN “exoskeleton” (the shell on the outside), bristling with thorns, can make you very uncomfortable first contact with the animal. The shell contains instead a soft body (one of the favorite dishes of Dalí, who was known to eat a dozen at each meal). The shell of the sea urchin, cleared of thorns, appears in many of his paintings.


Is it for fear of running out, Dalí represents in his paintings and also began to make surreal objects with bread. In his paintings, breads are most often an aspect of “hard” and phallic, as opposed to “soft” watches. Dali has always been a great admirer of bread. It tapissera round loaves Catalan walls of his museum in Figueras.


Traditional Area (based on the perspective and Renaissance painting). Realistic landscape full of strange and unreal objects in a natural environment. The background and how to use the landscape is one of the strengths of the art of Dalí. They help to create the atmosphere of unreality of his paintings (landscape of his native Catalonia and vast plain that surrounds Emporda Figueres).


Human bodies that open with drawers are found repeatedly in paintings and objects from Dalí. They symbolize the memory and the unconscious and refer to the “idea drawer”, a legacy of reading Freud’s concept. They express the mystery of the hidden secrets. Most children explore every drawer, cabinet and closet of their home.


It has long been part of the personal mythology of the painter. She is the first woman he child clay from a reproduction that adorned the family dining room model. It is also that he discovered a box of crayons in New York. It is the stupid look on his face that he still considered safe for women but inadequate perfect beauty in an elegant woman whose look or appear to be intelligent. Dalí has made several changes in the Venus Space Venus, Venus with drawers …


Salvador Dalí



Salvador Dalí




History of the collection