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Dali's 'le Christ'



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Dali's 'le Christ' by Natalia S.Y. Fang
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Salvador Dali's much loved painting Le Christ (1951) seems to portray the crucified Christ looking down protectively on the Sea of Galilee, where there are an ancient nobleman, a fisherman and his boat, and a modern-suited man. Yet Le Christ has attracted academic suspicion of its intentions, as also physical assaults from members of the public. Dali's conversion to Catholicism in 1941 it fitted with his breaking with conventional Surrealism and his siding with Franco in Spain's civil war. Yet Le Christ gives rise to doubts as to its straightforward religiosity. Dali's Christ is not conspicuously suffering: there are no nails, no blood, no sweat and no crown of thorns, but many reminders of Dali's beloved home of Port Lligat and of his sex-mad wife, Gala, who had escaped from Russian Communism. Christ's face is obscured and there is no title on the Cross indicating who is being crucified - instead just a piece of paper lifted from a painting by Dali's hero, Velazquez. So Dali probably saw and painted himself as the Christ-like figure on his Cross. Dali believed he was born to save the world from modern non-realist art -- though not by the route of martyrdom."
Release date NZ
December 10th, 2008
Country of Publication
black & white illustrations
VDM Verlag
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