Salvador Dali sculpture exhibit comes to Vancouver

You’ve seen his paintings of dripping clocks and surreal dreamscapes. But how about his sculptures?

A series of original bronze sculptures by Salvador Dali are on display now in Vancouver. The Definitely Dali exhibit, through May 12 at the Chali-Rosso Art Gallery on South Granville Street, features 10 sculptures from the master of surrealism.

Step inside the gallery and you’ll see many of Dali’s familiar painterly tropes, now in three dimensions.  There are, of course, several dripping clocks, hung from the branches of trees.  Another sculpture consists of a giant snail with wings, a tiny warrior poised on its back.  There’s a piano with can-can dancer legs, a metre-high thumb with branches sprouting from the tip and a bevy of angels in ecstatic poses.

The collection at the gallery represents 10 of 29 sculptures in the Dali Sculptural Collection.  All were made using an ancient technique known as the lost wax process, which gave Dali the flexibility to mould his subjects into unconventional shapes.

The sculptures on display are genuine Dali originals, though not necessarily one-of-a-kind pieces.  Each sculpture is part of a limited edition of 350. Once all 350 copies are made, the original cast is broken and the sculpture is never reproduced again.

One of the undisputed masters of surrealism, Spanish-born Dali created highly imaginative, visually arresting works throughout much of the 20th century.  His most famous painting, The Persistence of Memory, features the image of a pocket watch melting like a piece of “Camembert cheese” (as the artist explained) in the sun.  Beyond painting and sculpture, Dali also dabbled in other media, including printmaking, fashion, filmmaking and writing.

While you’re checking out the Dali sculptures, you can also gaze upon a few works by Picasso, Matisse, Rembrandt, Chagall and others. Tucked away on an unassuming stretch of South Granville Street, Chali-Rosso exhibits the largest private gallery collection of European masters in Canada. And many of the masterpieces on display – including all of the Dali sculptures – are for sale. Just don’t forget your cheque book.

Definitely Dali is on display at the Chali-Rosso Art Gallery (2250 Granville St.) through May 12.  

Dali's sculptures, including a version of Profile of Time (above) are on display in Vancouver.  Photo credit: Julo |Wikimedia Commons


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