What if Salvador Dali was born in 1983 instead of 1904?
Imagine his childhood filled with images of urban America instead of the beautiful countrysides of Spain. What would his work look like if he painted out of a studio in Brooklyn, a product of this generation, influenced by our fashion, music, and style?
Envision a Salvador painting about the issues facing modern society, inspired by things like the internet, social media, corporate america, politics, religion, and more. Witness Dali’s masterpieces reworked through an updated lens as art history collides with modern culture. I intend to pick up where he left off, with more than fifty years of perspective to guide me along they way. It is a humble tribute to my greatest inspiration.
24 X 24″ Acrylic on canvas, 2013
Dali was obsessed with the subconscious. This passion would lead to a deep interest and reverence for the teachings of Sigmund Freud, which served as inspiration for Anthropomorphic Chest of Drawers. A dark, disjointed figure has morphed into a chest with an extended arm that shuns society off in the distance. The ethereal scene represents the concept that we all possess hidden, secret elements to our personalities. It is a brilliant visual statement about psychoanalysis.
Tucked away inside these drawers we find the residue of life. A handful are filled with memories of happiness and love, while sadness and depression fester in others. Some drawers we control, yet others open and close without our permission and threaten to disclose the contents of our interior with the exterior world.
Dali’s version was painted in 1936, long before the internet and computers as we know them. The study of the subconscious was still relatively new scientific territory, and was comparable in many ways to cutting edge research. Human beings are complex creatures comprised of peaks and valleys. Through psychoanalysis, Freud demonstrated that we are able to look inside ourselves to discover, and tackle deep rooted issues. The path to self actualization begins from within.
Seventy seven years have passed and flash disks, CDs, SIM cards, chargers and audio jacks have replaced Dali’s drawers. Nowadays we live in an electronic jungle. Engulfed in hi-tech foliage, we’ve become completely inundated. Choked by the cables of the machine, we are unable to connect. Plugged in and tuned out, we glide through life, entertained by superficial, fleeting technology.
It reminds me of pigeons, flying around aimlessly, picking up the crumbs. Sadly, we all have wings but are too distracted to fly. There is no google search to discover your path in life. It would be convenient if your dreams populated the first few results and bliss was just a click away. You can however optimize your life in a tangible and effective fashion, so that a search will produce what you seek.
Unplug, power down, and take the battery out. Allow the screen to dim and fade to black. Listen closely as the constant buzz of the currents dies down. Let the silence of your soul fill your chest. Pay attention as it bounces off your organs, the reverberations will guide you to the places you’ve ignored. Open what you have left closed for ages. Your life is waiting.