The artist excelled in a multitude of mediums, most famously painting, sculpture and drawing. This website draws together much of his finest work and organises it by medium. Our homepage provides a summary of some of the highlights of his surrealist work, with much more detail to be found around the rest of the website. In the early parts of his career, Dali moved to Paris which was a melting pot of artistic talent in the 1920s. Paris life brought Dali into contact with the likes of Joan Miro, Rene Magritte and Pablo Picasso. They were to influences the future direction of each other and this sharing of ideas continued in the French capital for many decades afterwards.
Soon after these experiences, artist Dali was to move into his surrealist style which was to gift the world artistic classics such as The Persistence of Memory, The Elephants, The Disintegration Of The Persistence Of Memory and Soft Watch At The Moment Of First Explosion. From then on, Dali was to lead a productive and creative career which also touched on other elements of society including politics, fame and fortune. Those looking to learn more about his life should check out our detailed Salvador Dali biography. Beyond the art, Dali was an incredible character, eccentric and extrovert in the extreme. The Surrealist art movement needed strong personalities to take this modern art form into the mainstream, and Salvador was ideal for this.
Previous to his Surrealist work, Salvador Dali also produced Cubist and Futurist paintings. As his career progressed, Dali also went well beyond oil painting, taking in sculpture and drawing plus many other art mediums. Dali's connections to Surrealism, Futurism and Cubism should not distract from the traditional nature of Dali's techniques and themes. Dali regularly underlined his respect for and influence from the likes of Michelangelo, Vermeer and Raphael, as well as several other significant masters. The way in which this artist captured surfaces in his paintings resembles that of famous Flemish painters like van Eyck. The themes used by Dali include religious and mythical topics and these have inspired artists all the way back to the Renaissance.
The Persistence of Memory
The Persistence of Memory combines the dream-like imagination of artist Dali along with the Catalonian scenery which connects with his early life. Clocks melting like cheese are a symbol that even a fleeting art fan can link to the work of this famous Surrealist. In order to produce such creativity, Salvador would use psychological methods to enter a deep, meditative state then would then allow him to access the more eccentric areas of his mind. This painting and the items included with in it offer the key elements of the Surrealist work produced by Dali, and it was in that art movement in which he made the most significant impact. The artist used some bold colours in this painting which really lift the surrealist style into a impactful piece of art. This colour scheme was continued into several other paintings in Dali's Surrealist periods.
The Disintegration Of The Persistence Of Memory
Rose Meditative features an overpowering rose, symbolising the powerful love between the couple found at the bottom of the canvas. Dali continues to bright Catalonian-inspired landscape here, though it sits quietly in the background as the rose takes the viewer's eye. It was in this region that Dali would live and work for much of his life, and these bright colours can be seen frequently throughout his surrealist work.
Dream Caused By The Flight Of A Bee Around A Pomegranate
The Temptation Of St Anthony
The Temptation Of St Anthony repeats several surrealist symbols found frequently in Dali's work. Horses and elephants carry various items which are to tempt St Anthony, as part of a themed competition in New York. Bernini's obelisks again appear here, balanced in an unrealistically way on elongated elephants, underlining the surrealist approach used here by the artist.
Soft Watch At The Moment Of First Explosion
Person at the Window
Young Virgin Auto-Sodomized By Her Own Chastity
List of Famous Salvador Dali Paintings
The list below summarises some of the highlights from Dali's extensive career, concentrating solely on his paintings.
- The Persistence of Memory
- The Elephants
- The Disintegration Of The Persistence Of Memory
- Rose Meditative
- Dream Caused By The Flight Of A Bee Around A Pomegranate
- The Temptation Of St Anthony
- Soft Watch At The Moment Of First Explosion
- Person at the Window
- Hallucinogenic Toreador
- Young Virgin Auto-Sodomized By Her Own Chastity
- Swans Reflecting Elephants
- Landscape with Butterflies
- Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea
- Head Exploding
- Metamorphosis of Narcissus
- Galatea of the Spheres