Le Surréalisme, c’est moi!

Labeled as an eccentric, a madman, and a pure genius, Salvador Dalí, with his oeuvre and provocative manner, did away with the boundaries between art and life, originality and commercialism as nearly no other twentieth-century artist did. He gave form to his vision of Surrealism as the aesthetic synthesis of dreams and reality in practically all forms of art media, but also via the way he presented his own self to the world. This exhibition at the Kunsthalle Wien reassesses Dalí’s controversially perceived output in relation to present-day art.

Salvador Dalí, The Eye, 1945

Salvador Dalí, Flores Surrealistas, 1938

Dalí was one of the very first artists to devote himself to design, cinema, and the entirety of mass media, while also practicing marketing strategies that have become  primarily associated with Andy Warhol. He regarded Surrealism as a way of living, and occupied himself in almost every field of cultural production.  He designed stage sets, perfume bottles and jewelry, worked with filmakers such as Luis Buñuel, Alfred Hitchcock and Walt Disney, shot commercials, appeared in TV shows, and even made his paintings available to the covers Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Country House. Dalí made scores of varied roles his own and even cultivated his personal appearance to the point that  it became something of a trademark and, later on, a caricature.

The exhibition highlights approximately seventy selected works by Salvador Dalí, which are juxtapositioned against internationally acclaimed pieces by Louise Bourgeois, Glenn Brown, Markus Schinwald and Francesco Vezzoli. Paintings, sculptures, drawings, films, and video works explore the visual worlds of the unconscious, the history of art and the tradition of painting, the phenomenon of celebrity, and the role of art and the artist in society and popular culture.

Louise Bourgeois, Arch of Hysteria, 2004

Glenn Brown, Song to the Siren, 2009

Francesco Vezzoli, Surrealiz (Lucio Fontana as Marco Antonio), 2008

Le Surréalisme, c’est moi!

Salvador Dalí & Louise Bourgeois, Glenn Brown, Markus Schinwald, Francesco Vezzoli

Kunsthalle Wien, Hall 2

Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Vienna / +43 15218933

Daily from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., Thursdays from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Through October 23th, 2011

Photos: Courtesy of Kunsthalle Wien

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