Salvador Dalí, the first retrospective to be seen in the United States in more than 60 years, embraces every aspect of his creative life, assembling more than 200 works from the artist’s influential career. Visitors to this centennial retrospective at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (Feb. 16-May 15, 2005) will be treated to a surreal shopping experience in the exhibition store, with products ranging from jewelry, furniture and fragrances designed by Dalí to a line of offbeat products celebrating the artist’s marvelously madcap mustache.
Visitors can choose from more than 50 books devoted to Dalí and surrealism. The exhibition catalogue, Dalí ($48 paper; $75 cloth), explores the development of the artist's technique and style, his relationship with the Surrealists, his experiments with optical illusions, and his interest in themes related to science and religion in his later work. The book (560 pages, 9 ¾ x 11 ¾) includes illustrations of all the works loaned to the exhibition, and others, as well as comparative illustrations and photographs. The volume contains an introductory essay by Dawn Ades, the eminent Dalí scholar, as well as scholarly entries on the more than 200 individual works included in the exhibition written by many of the leading experts on Dalí and Surrealism. New scholarly research is also incorporated in a "Dalí Dictionary," and in the comprehensive chronology. Finally, a section of the book will be devoted to the artist's own highly imaginative writings.
Dalí's Mustache ($12.95), the photographic interview jointly conceived by Salvador Dalí and photojournalist Philippe Halsman, is a cult classic and has become a collector’s item since its original publication in 1954. Comprising seemingly nonsensical questions and answers illustrated by Halsman's experimental photographs of Dalí's mustache, this combination of wit, absurdity, and the off-handedly profound is irresistible. The present volume faithfully reproduces the first edition and will introduce a new generation to the irreverent humor and imaginative genius of two great artists. Reproductions from the book are also available in a set of note cards ($13.95).
One display sure to draw plenty of attention is the Lips Sofa that Dalí designed in 1936-37, based on the lips of the actress Mae West. This sensuous piece of furniture (priced at $850) will greet visitors as they enter the exhibition shop.
In his remarkable career, Dalí designed and produced surrealist films, illustrated books, handcrafted jewelry, and created theatrical sets and costumes. Reproductions of Dalís jewelry designs from the 1950s will be available in the exhibition shop. There are 17 different designs, including ruby lips pins, telephone earrings, necklaces, corset rings (lingerie for your fingers) and watches, ranging in price from $65 to $200. A perfect companion to one of the elegant reproductions is the book Dalí Jewels-Joyas ($12.50), featuring full color photos of the brilliant and imaginative jewelry that Dalí designed.
Dalí also created many fragrances and designed incredible bottles to house these essences. Visitors can choose from a collection of perfumes and colognes ($24 to $68), including Dalíssime, Dalístyle, Salvador Dalí for men and women.
The exhibition shop and online store (www.philamuseum.org) also provide colorful reproductions of many of Dalí’s paintings in posters and framed formats ready to hang. Those who are ready for a surreal challenge can choose a puzzle featuring Dalí’s The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus (1958-59) or The Hallucinogenic Toreador (1968-70). The puzzles ($22.50) are comprised of 500 pieces and measure 18" x 24" once completed. Included with each puzzle is an artist biography and painting history.
A series of three music CDs ($16.95) relate to times and places in which Dalí created some of his greatest works of art. Vintage flamenco music played and sung by flamenco masters Carlos Montoya, Paco Pena and others reflects the era of Dalí’s early paintings. Classical and Avant Garde music with a surreal touch includes the concerto from the movie "Spellbound", a Dalí and Alfred Hitchcock collaboration. The music reflects the era of Dalí’s surreal paintings. Lastly, rhythmic and exotic tangos from Spain and South America exude a Dalínean flavor. The music pays tribute to Dalí’s classical paintings.
And, of course, visitors enamored with Dalí’s mustache can take the artist’s trademark whiskers home in a variety of ways. The fun Stylish Mustache Kit ($12.95) provides a mustache for every day of the week, including Sunday's fabulous Dalí-esque handlebar. Another option is the Dalí Vase ($100), a fine, unglazed porcelain creation by potter and interior designer Jonathan Adler.
About Salvador Dalí
Philadelphia is the only U.S. venue for Salvador Dalí, the most comprehensive retrospective ever mounted of the artist’s career as a painter, draftsman, and sculptor. The exhibition of more than 200 works places Dalí’s famous surrealist canvases of the 1920s and 1930s in context with his early and later work and reassesses his position in modern art. The exhibition is on view at the Philadelphia Museum of Art from February 16 through May 15, 2005.
In Philadelphia, Salvador Dalí has been made possible by ADVANTA. Additional funding has been provided by an endowment from The Annenberg Foundation for major exhibitions at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities, by grants from The Pew Charitable Trusts and the National Endowment for the Arts, and by a generous contribution from Gisela and Dennis Alter. Promotional support provided by NBC 10 WCAU, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Amtrak. The print media sponsor is The Philadelphia Inquirer and Philly.com.
The exhibition has been organized by Palazzo Grassi, Venice, with the Gala – Salvador Dalí Foundation, Figueres, Spain, in collaboration with the Philadelphia Museum of Art and with the support of the Salvador Dalí Museum of Saint Petersburg, Florida, in celebration of the centennial of Dalí 's birth.
For further information about the Dalí centennial year exhibitions, celebrations, including a calendar of international events, commissioned by the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation, visit www.dali2004.org.