“The Temptation of Saint Anthony. In this picture temptation appears to Saint Anthony successively in the form of a horse in the foreground representing strength, sometimes also the symbol of voluptuousness, and in the form of the elephant which follows it, carrying on its back the golden cup of lust in which a nude woman is standing precariously balanced on the fragile pedestal, a figure which emphasizes the erotic character of the composition. The other elephants are carrying buildings on their backs; the first of these is an obelisk inspired by that of Bernini in Rome, the second and third are burdened with Venetian edifices in the style of Palladio. In the background another elephant carries a tall tower which is not without phallic overtones, and in the clouds one can glimpse a few fragments of Escorial, symbol of temporal and spiritual order. The elephant theme appears several times in Dali’s works of this period: for example, in Atomica Melancholica of 1945 and Triumph of Dionysus of 1953.”
This picture is what makes me love Dali So much. The different levels in the painting.
One Second Before Awakening from a Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate for your computer desktop. Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee was painted while Dali and Gala were living in America. The full title explains the subject and content of the painting, which was taken from a dream that Gala reported to Dali. He announced that this painting was the first illustration of Freud’s discovery, that external stimuli could be the cause of a dream.
The catalyst for the dream, which is the pomegranate, hangs in the air with the bee flying toward it. Behind the pomegranate Gala’s dream unfolds over a sea of brilliant blue. A naked Gala lies asleep as she hovers over a stone; an allusion to the common floating feeling that can occur in dreams.
To the left of Gala is a huge pomegranate that spills seeds on to the sea below. Out of the pomegranate an angry, pink fish is emerging with a wide open mouth. A snarling tiger leaps out of the fish. From this tiger another emerges, its tail in the mouth of the previous one. The tigers are rushing toward Gala, their claws at the ready, but it is the bayonet, mirroring the sting of the bee, that will wake her.
3 of my favorite Dali’s.