CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

Dali home museum draws in surreal seekers

03-15-2011 09:38 BJT

Watch Video

Play Video

Salvador Dali is one of the world's most recognizable surrealist artists. The eccentric Spaniard's museum draws thousands of tourists to the city of Figueres in the northeast corner of Spain to see some of his iconic works. But it's at his house in Port Lligat the genius mind of this artist is best understood - from his polar bear lamp shades to giant eggs adorning his property.

In the far northeast corner of Spain, the city of Figueres looks much like many other Spanish towns.

But, as the birthplace of famed surrealist artist Salvador Dali, Figueres holds some surprises.

Adorned with giant eggs, gold mannequins, sculptures of traditional breads, the Dali Theatre-Museum bills itself as the largest surrealistic object in the world.

It started life as a 19th century municipal theatre, but was largely destroyed in the Spanish Civil War.

The Spanish artist transformed the ruins into a showcase for his work and from other artists he admired.

In the far northeast corner of Spain, the city of Figueres looks much like many other
Spanish towns.(File photo)

Since opening in 1974, the museum has become a large tourist attraction in the region. It had more than 880 thousand visits in 2010.

As an artist, Dali spanned much of the 20th Century, creating paintings, sculptures, photographs, holograms, installations and all manner of spectacles.

Some 1,500 works are on display. Many reflect Dali's skill at manipulating perception and his determination to push viewers to constantly re-evaluate what they see.

Montse Aguer is Director of the Centre for Dali Studies. She knew him in his last few years before his death in 1989 and has long studied his work and written several books about the artist.

Montse Aguer said, "Dali, you would say was very ironic, very provocative. He did not want a conventional museum, he wanted a museum without a chronological order, so the visitor is surprised at every moment and so he interprets what is seen based on his own knowledge."

As an artist, Dali spanned much of the 20th Century,
creating paintings, sculptures, photographs, holograms,
installations and all manner of spectacles.(File photo)

To gain a greater understanding of the artist's vision, tourists can visit his home and studio by Cadaques, Spain, about 30 kilometers away.

Montse Aguer said, "It's an arid world, a mineral landscape, almost extra-terrestrial. He said it was a world that helped him to smooth things down, to become more austere. I believe Cadaques determines the way Dali sees reality."

The home is right on the waterfront of Portlligat on Spain's Costa Brava.

True to form, Dali's home has some unusual decorations - a giant egg on top, elsewhere large silver busts on a roof.

Now, visitors can tour the home in small groups - reservations are required.

The home in Portlligat is less visited - more off the beaten path than the Museum in Figueres.

It isn't open throughout the entire year and just over 100,000 people visited last year.


Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program