Salvador Dalí Museum
Modern view of the museum
Original Dali museum building in 1982
Salvador Dali in the 1960s with his famous mustache
An example of Dali's work: The Persistence of Memory (1931)
Interior perspective of the museum and its design.
Archival evidence of Salvador Dali's telegram he sent to Mr. and Mrs. Morse . Credit: Collection of The Dalí Museum Library & Archive, St. Petersburg, Florida.
Backstory and Context
The Salvador Dali Museum is named after Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dalí I Domenech, who was born in 1904 in Spain. Dali attended a fine arts academy in Madrid and earned recognition as a developing artist with his first show in 1925. His first taste of intercontinental appreciation came in 1928 when several of his paintings were displayed in the Carnegie International Exhibition in Pennsylvania. Dalí went on to become a central figure in the Surrealist Movement in the early 1930s. During World War II, he and his wife, Gala, relocated to the United States. While moving to the United States, Dali transformed from Surrealism and into his classic period. It was during this era where he produced 19 large canvases, including “The Hallucinogenic Toreador,” “The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus” and “The Sacrament of the Last Supper.”
The origin of the Dali Museum began in Cleveland, Ohio in 1942 when A. Reynolds Morse and Eleanor R. Morse started collecting Dali artwork. In 1971, they began displaying their 200-piece collection in their home until a decade later, when the realization of a more permanent home was needed. In 1972, St. Petersburg was chosen as the location to meet this need and the museum officially opened in 1982. From 1982 to 2008, a smaller structure was home to the collection until a new location within St. Petersburg was selected and a larger building was designed, with the assistance from the Beck Group, a Texas-based, internationally operating, construction and real estate company. The new and current home was opened in 2011.
The museum’s collection includes 96 oils, more than 100 watercolors and drawings and over 1,300 graphics, sculptures, objects, and photographs. Later acquisitions include “Portrait of My Dead Brother” in 1995, “Venus de Milo with Drawers” in 2002, and “Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea Which at Twenty Meters Becomes A Portrait of Abraham Lincoln” in 2005.
Amenities of the museum include many art galleries, a café, and a museum store. The museum also offers yoga classes and family programming. Some family-oriented activities include storybook time, "DillyDally with Dali" (crafting), as well as the Book of Life productions.
Destination: The Dali. The Dali. January 01, 2017. Accessed March 13, 2017. http://thedali.org/.
Salvador Dali Museum: an Inside Look at the Art and Architecture of the Dali. YouTube. December 09, 2014. Accessed March 13, 2017. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuIIzgHAviY.
Salvador Dali Biography. Bio. January 01, 2017. Accessed March 13, 2017. http://www.biography.com/people/salvador-dal-40389#expulsion-from-the-surrealists.
Accessed March 13, 2017. https://www.google.com/search?sa=G&hl=en&q=museu+salvador+dali+florida&tbm=isch&tbs=simg:CAQSlwEJ2QV....
Accessed March 13, 2017. https://www.google.com/search?sa=G&hl=en&q=salvador+dali+ocelot&tbm=isch&tbs=simg:CAQSmwEJQIpBW5z3Nm....
Accessed March 13, 2017. https://www.google.com/search?sa=G&hl=en&q=museum+of+modern+art&tbm=isch&tbs=simg:CAQSlwEJXnpdUda8l6....
Collection of The Dalí Museum Library & Archive, St. Petersburg, Florida.