Sunday, November 25, 2012

Self Portrait as Mona Lisa

Artist: Self Portrait by Salvador Dali
            Photographic Elements by Philippe Halsman
Media: painting/photography
Dimension: 77 cm × 53 cm (30 in × 21 in)
Title: Self Portrait as Mona Lisa
Date: 1954

Salvador Dali, from Spain, was a skilled technical drawer best known for the striking & bizarre images in his surrealist work. his painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. Dali's expansive artistic repertoire included film, sculpture  & photography, in a collaboration with a range of artists in a variety of media. His eccentric manner & attention grabbing public actions sometimes drew more attention than his artwork.

Salvador Dali's statement - " I do not paint a portrait to look like the subject, rather does the person grow to look like his portrait."

In 1941 Halsman met the surrealist artist Salvador Dali and they began to collaborate in the late 1940's.Obviously referring to Duchamp's Mona Lisa parody, Dali's replaces Duchamp's understated additions with the artist's elaborate signature mustache; Mona/Dali looks out at the observer with decidedly non-Leonardesque eyes while holding an avalanche of gold currency in hands that must be the photographic simulacrum of Dali's own. To this observer it seems as if the purpose of this picture is to paint Dali as both creator and self-created; playing on the notion that the artist is his own subject. Halsman & Dali also released a compendium of their collaboration in 1954 book, Dali's Mustache, which features 36 views of the artists mustache. 

I think this portrait is very attention grabbing & humorous. i believe that this picture was not to be taken very serious, and somewhat poking fun at the original "Mona Lisa" painting. The way this self portrait was painted makes me enjoy the original piece just a little more. :)  This uniqueness & sort of iconic piece connects to the theme overall.

                                                                                                                                                  (Berlin A.)                          

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