Born Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech on May 11, 1904 in Figueres, Spain, he displayed a great aptitude for the visual arts as a teenager. Three years after his first exhibition at the age of 14, he enrolled at the Academia de San Fernando in Madrid. At school, he emulated many contemporary styles but also the works of Johannes Vermeer and Diego Velázquez. During his visits to Paris in the late 1920s, he was introduced to the Surrealist movement by René Magritte and Joan Miró. Though the concept of Surrealism was new to him, Dalí was already well versed in the psychoanalytic theories of Sigmund Freud. Dabbling in various projects throughout his long career, in 1942 he published the book The Secret Life of Salvador Dalí. A mixture of self-aggrandizing confessions and sadistic fantasies about his childhood, the book further outlined the artist’s outlandish persona. However, his pronounced sense of ego was not always unfounded, as evinced in his works inclusion in Alfred Hitchcock’s famous dream sequence from the film Spellbound (1945). Dalí died on January 23, 1989 in his hometown of Figueres, Spain. Today, his works are held in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Tate Modern in London, the Reina Sofia National Museum in Madrid, and the Museum Ludwig in Cologne, among others.
Courtesy of artnet.com