Friday, September 12, 2008

Fine Art Friday - Salvador Dali and Hell

Hell DaliNote: in the 2007 Issue of Soul Magazine, Issue 3, I found the following with regard to the above painting:

"In the 1960's, the co-founders (Msgr. Colgan and John Haffert) were instrumental in viting Padre Pio to become the spiritual father of the Apostolate. They also commissioned Salvador Dali to paint the "Vision of Hell" which expresses his vision of Sister Lucia's description of what she saw at the 3rd. apparition by Our Lady..."


The first time I realized that artist Salvador Dali was a devout Catholic was when my family and I visited the World Apostolate of Fatima (formerly known as the Blue Army Shrine) in Washington, NJ. The above painting of Hell hangs at the Shrine.

...his old style, surrealism,dominates these[sic] portrayal of hell (the left side of the painting), while his newer style of "Religious Mysticism" is used on the right side of the painting in the portrayal of Our Lady of Fatima. A close look at Our Lady of Fatima shows that an experimental technique was used around the upper body of Our Lady. The paint has texture. It is interesting to note that Dali does not use his wife Gala as the subject for his portrayal of Mary, as he had in previous portrayals of Our Lady (The Madonna of Port Lligat (1949,1950)); however, in vision of hell Our Lady of Fatima does hold her hands open in a similar way as the Madonna of Port Lligat.

HB Hell...Dali, as well as other surrealist painters, were greatly influenced by the Dutch painter, Hieronymous Bosch (1450-1516). Vision of Hell actually copies a part of Hieronymous Bosch's Hell, portrayed in the right hand panel of the Garden of Earthly Delights (triptych). The burning buildings shown in the top left if Dali's painting closely resemble Bosch's burning building in hell, and, interestingly, Dali also picks up from Bosch's inferno the image of the tattered flag, as well as a rectangular structure from which emanate four rays of light...

...Salvador Dali often hides images and faces within his paintings, and many of his works are self-portraits. There are three places in this painting where it seems Dali is portraying himself. First, in the polymorphic body. Second, in a whimsical face which appears in a puff of smoke in the lower left center part of the painting. However, there is another face, hidden face, composed of an eye and a nose, that dominates the painting...
Source here

Can you find the third self-portrait? Dali

If you are interested in Dali's subject of hell, you may like to few his works depicting Dante's Inferno. You can find it here

8 comments:

Kathleen Miller said...

I had no idea Dali was a devout Catholic. Thank you for sharing and for the great job you do on Fine Art Friday.

God Bless!

Tracy said...

I love your Fine Art Friday posts, I always look forward to this:)

Blessing!

Ed Sousa said...

Thank you Esther. I knew of Salvador Dali painting of Hell. I saw it many years ago but I also didn't know that he was a devout Catholic.

Esther said...

Just to clarify, he was a devout Catholic towards the end of his life as I understand it. I have to look into that a little further.

Glad you all enjoyed it.

Thanks so much for you kind comments!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this education on Dali!
However, I think I could go nuts staring at his paintings trying to find the hidden images. LOL

teresa anawim

Esther said...

LOL, Teresa, I know what you mean :-)

Helen said...

His mother was a.devout Catholic but his father was an atheist, so it was later in.life after an audience with the Pope in the 1940s I believe that he declared himself Catholic. He has an early work called Sometimes I like to.Spit on my Mother for Fun, or some equally outrageous name which mocks his mother's faith and troubled her family greatly. However he was drawn back to Faith himself, and especially how religion and science mingled. His religious works, as you see from this, are striking. I grew up looking at his Christ of St John of the Cross which is a masterpiece!

Esther G. said...

Oh, thank you Helen! Very interesting!