Monday, May 28, 2007

Dali Multifaceted Exhibition













"I dreamed I saw Dali with a supermarket trolley"(U2).
Dodging the rain Friday afternoon,I braved the crowds to view the Salvador Dali exhibition currently at the Nagoya City Art Museum.Billed as "Dali Multifaceted".

In my ignorance I thought of him only as the eccentric spiky mustachioed gent who was into melting watches.On show from his sixty odd year career were those dissolving timepieces but also examples of clothing,furniture,magazine covers,advertising campaigns and perfume bottles he had created and designed.
For a Friday afternoon the gallery was crowded.Populated with schoolkids and businessmen who should have been elsewhere at that time of the day.Not gazing at decaying birds and swarms of ants.Packed with pushy older women haughtily pushing in front of others and jostling to get a view while most people filed orderly past each piece on display.
It was difficult on occasions to spend enough time trying to decipher the hidden meanings behind the surreal creations as other viewers pressed past you or obscured your view.One of his larger paintings was displayed on the end wall of a room.It took up the whole wall yet still seemed cramped there.A larger wall space I think would have done it more justice and allowed viewers to see it more effectively.
The room lacked the width and depth to fully take in the painting.Stepping away from the canvas a couple of metres merely impeded other people looking at different exhibits on the neighbouring walls and encouraged others to move into the space you had just vacated.
Apart from this I did find the lightning above the magazine covers inadequate.It was difficult to see all the detail in the drawings as the lighting was just too murky to make out the whole of the illustrations.

Im not a great fan of surreallism with its emphasis on dreams and the unconscious.Or Dali with his sexual phallic images and decomposing animals.
That said,it was enlightening to see his work up close and realise he was into other more mainstream,accessible things.Some of the furniture such as the lamps were elegant and sleek while his lips sofa looked fun to sit on.Then again Im just pleased that I wasnt the only person scratching their head in front of some of his more obscure offerings with its biblical and mythical references.
The exhibition runs until early June and my adult admission cost me 1,300yen.

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