Salvador Dali.

Essay by kberg3030High School, 12th gradeA+, October 2005

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Salvador Dali is one of the greatest artists of the surrealist movement. He has been labeled as one of the great geniuses in the art world during his time. Dali depicted scenes from his dreams as well as distorted views of ordinary objects and turned them into famous and timeless pieces of art. Using a method he called critical paranoia, also known as self-inducing psychotic hallucinations, in order to create art, Dali was able to convey dreamlike scenes and hallucinatory images in most of his paintings. Even though this may seem as a crazy method, he said, "The difference between a madman and me, is that I am not mad." He is most famous for his painting 'The Persistence of Memory', which is now illustrated in museums all across the world. Dali was largely criticized for his portrayals of religious themes. His painting the Crucifixion was called to eccentric and to provocative by leading surrealists of the time, thus leading to his denouncement from the surrealist movement.

In the 1940's he started to stray from his traditional surrealist style and took up a more religious style with a surrealist twist that stuck with him for the rest of his life. Dali was nevertheless a genius of his time, not only did Dali paint talented works of art but he illustrated books, wrote screens plays on the surrealist movement, handcrafted jewelry, and created sets and designed costumes for theaters.

Dali's most recognizable work, 'The Persistence of Memory' (below), is his first piece that he used his famous melting watches. These watches represented space and time to Dali. To him time loses it meaning when it bends and melts as the watches do in this piece. In his artwork, insects often make appearance though their meanings can be vastly different. Other children...