Oil on panel
Image: 10 3/4 in x 16 in
Gift of A. Reynolds & Eleanor Morse
Worldwide rights ©Salvador Dalí. Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí (Artists Rights Society), 2017 / In the USA ©Salvador Dalí Museum, Inc. St. Petersburg, FL 2017.
This reclining, female bather points to Dalí's simultaneous interest in the unity of classical motifs and the fragmentation of Cubist geometry. The solidity of the figure's body, whose model was Dalí's sister, is exaggerated and angular, mirroring the form of the rocks. She wears a simple toga in reference to antiquity, but Dalí undermines any form of naive Classicism with the introduction of Cubist elements and the use of a playfully ironic register.
In April 1926, Dalí had visited Picasso's studio in Paris, located in the rue de la Boétie. There he saw the older Spaniard's recent works which shortly thereafter would be exhibited in the Galerie Rosenberg. This work was painted following his return from Paris. Following motifs found in what he later called Picasso's "poetic Cubism" — meaning Cubism informed by Surrealist motifs — Dalí introduces sharp, angular shadows and notably a shadow of the figure's profile which doubles as a witty intrusion of the artist into the composition.
This work figured in both the Autumn Salon (Saló de Tardor) at the Sala Parés in Barcelona (1926) and in Dalí's second solo exhibition at Galeries Dalmau (1926). The critic Sebastià Gasch, writing in the Catalan avant-garde publication L'Amic de les Arts (Sitges, February 1927), described this painting as an "almost perfect" example of Dalí's classical tendency, whilst challenging the painter's modish engagement with Picasso's recent Cubism, though in reality, as Robert Lubar suggests, it reveals a dialogue with both Classicism and Cubism. Writing in the review Mediodía (Seville, February 1928), Gasch again applauded Dalí's always pleasing use of "pictorial rhythm."
1926, Barcelona, Sala Parés, “Saló de Tardor”
1926, Barcelona, Galeries Dalmau, “Exposició S. Dalí”
1965, New York, Gallery of Modern Art, “Salvador Dalí, 1910-1965”
1994, London, Hayward Gallery, "Dalí: The Early Years"
1994, Madrid, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, "Dalí Joven, 1918-1930"
1994, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, "Dalí: The Early Years"
1995, Barcelona, Palau Robert, "Dalí: els Anys Joves, 1918-1930"
1995, St. Petersburg, Salvador Dali Museum, “The Young Dali: Works from 1914-1930”
1997, Ft. Lauderdale, Ft. Lauderdale Museum of Art, "Treasures from the Salvador Dalí Museum"
2000, Hartford, Connecticut, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, “Dalí's Optical Illusions”
2000, Washington, D.C., Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, “Dalí's Optical Illusions”
2000, Edinburgh, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, “Dalí's Optical Illusions”
2007, Osaka, Suntory Museum, "Dalí Multifaceted : Centenary Exhibition"
2007, Nagoya, Nagoya City Art Museum, "Dalí Multifaceted : Centenary Exhibition"
2007, Sapporo, Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art, "Dalí Multifaceted : Centenary Exhibition"
2007, Figueras, Teatro Museu Dalí, Prestec temporal a la Fundacio Gala-Salvador Dalí per a l'exposicio "Autoretrats"
2009, Melbourne, National Gallery of Victoria, "Salvador Dalí : Liquid Desire"
2010, Atlanta, High Museum of Art, “Salvador Dalí: The Late Work”
2014, St. Petersburg, Salvador Dali Museum, "Picasso/Dalí Dalí/Picasso"
2015, Barcelona, Musee Picasso,"Picasso/Dalí Dalí/Picasso"
2016, Kyoto, Kyoto Municipal Museum, “Salvador Dalí”
2016, Tokyo, National Art Center, “Salvador Dalí”