Salvador Dali Prints

Written by Serena Berger
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Salvador Dali prints feature the works of one of the most important figures in art history and unquestionably the most famous and influential of the Surrealists. At one point after gaining fame and being grouped with others in this genre, Dali said, "The difference between me and the Surrealists is that I am surrealism." In every aspect of his life, but particularly his art, Salvador Dali sought to find a truth in the subconscious deeper than that which could ever be discovered through reason alone, and he strove to portray that truth in his paintings.

Sigmund Freud's theories on the erotic significance of subconscious imagery had a profound effect on Dali, which you can see in any number of his works. Many of his most famous works were painted (or conceived) while under the influence of hallucinogens, which he used to free his subconscious (though the state into which he descended was unquestionably one of paranoia). From 1929 to 1937, hallucinogenic drugs, Freudian eroticism, and paranoia fueled the work of Dali, which was to become a milestone in art history.

Subconscious Imagery in Salvador Dali Prints

Many of his paintings, such as Persistence of Memory and Swans Reflecting as Elephants feature common objects that are deformed in a bizarre or surreal fashion. Clocks melting and draping over the carcass of a horse in the desert or faces partially merged with goblets are the sorts of images that populate Salvador Dali prints. The paintings are often bleak and frightening and cannot be deciphered easily. A sense of horror, wariness, confusion, or twisted sexuality pervades the oftentimes grotesque work, but without a Freudian key or Dali's own explanation, you could go a lifetime without understanding the particular configuration or full significance of a Dali painting.

If you have not taken the time to explore and interpret some Salvador Dali prints on your own, you should find a piece which resonates with you and spend some time contemplating it on your own, before looking up the critical interpretations to see what others think the work means. Though you may not be able to uncover the exact meaning that Dali had in mind when creating the art, you may find a more personal interpretation. You will find a greater difference of opinion about the meaning of Dali's work than almost any other artist's, a fitting testament to his success at portraying the language of the subconscious in art


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