Gala and Salvador Dali: A Glorious and Poisonous Love Story


Salvador Dali was an art in itself. He lived in the style of his artistic creation and was constantly afraid that he would stop creating. The cohesion of his illness, talent, intelligence and ambition brought him to the artistic peak.

The story of the great Dali begins with the story of one love. For a woman and spouse, for a faithful companion and muse. For her endless care and nurturing of Dali's mind, for the perseverance and faith that led to the realization and success of the famous artist, it says "24 seven".

Gala's influence on Dalí's art

Gala was ten years older than Dali and they met when he was 26 years old. She recognized his great talent and sensed his artistic soul, and then decided to do her best to realize his potential.

When they married, Dali was just another poor and unknown artist. He painted and drew on everything he saw, and his art was chaotic. It was only after Gala arrived in his life that Dalí developed the discipline and pursuit of true painting.

His beloved told him that he had to paint like the old masters - with oil on canvas. It was then that he began to step into his surrealism.

Although his works were well received by critics at the time, they did not sell at all at first. But Gala was persistent – ​​she traveled all over Spain and sold her husband's paintings herself.

Salvador and Gala Dali / Facebook
Salvador and Gala Dali / Photo: Facebook

The stay in America

In 1939, Dali and Gala went to the United States and, fortunately, the Spanish artist took a liking to the Americans. He was an absolute showman and briefly enchanted Hollywood.

Alfred Hitchcock hired him to paint a vision of a dream in one of his films, and Walt Disney asked him to work on an animated film that would show the light of surrealism and bring that direction closer to the public. "Destino" is a short animated film released only in 2003 because at the time it was created it was too surreal to be shown.

His paintings did not begin to sell until 1943, when a wealthy couple from Colorado - Reynolds and Eleanor Morse they saw his works at an exhibition and became his patrons for life. Since then, the prices of his paintings began to rise.

The painting "Galarina" from 1945 / Photo: EPA-EFE/ANATOLY MALTSEV

Gala as Salvador Dali's manager

Salvador Dali rose to the top and his name became bigger than all his contemporaries. Gala was a key element of his success. She was his guide, his greatest support and, according to Dalí, his queen. As she herself said, she cared about life, and he cared about art.

She sold the paintings, managed the accounts, the finances and the contracts – all things Dalí could not do. While Gala took care of everything, Dali was completely incapable of the real world, did not know the value of money and did not recognize currencies. According to one anecdote, the artist paid 100 instead of 10 dollars to a taxi driver.


Crisis in marriage

The crisis in their marriage began to build when Gala suddenly acquired a reputation as a woman not to be trifled with and a woman who was always ready for conflict. It seems that she never stopped attracting younger men, with whom she also had affairs, but this did not bother Dali.

Their relationship began to change abruptly - under the dark facade of fame, together they began to create a perverse reality. Dally and Gala started organizing orgies, and at the same time they distanced themselves from each other.

Then they returned to Spain, with the excuse that Dalí had lost his inspiration for art. In order to renew their love, they bought a small house in a Spanish village. However, that decision turned out to be wrong. While Gala aspired to a quiet life, Dali wanted to live in the spotlight.

Photo: EPA-EFE / Enric Fontcuberta

The Amanda Lear affair

Gala began to live separately from Dali and began to travel alone more and more often. She openly started flirting with young men and having affairs with them. Dally said that he found it wonderful and fascinating that an old woman like Gala could seduce young men. He never stopped loving her.

During his stay in Paris in 1965, Salvador Dalí began an affair with then-famous model Amanda Lear, with whom he spent the next fifteen years of his life. Gala accepted Amanda and for some time the three traveled together and surprised the public with their appearance. Finally, Gala asked Dali to buy her the promised villa in Pubol and leave her alone. He kept his word and Gala left forever.

Her departure affected Dalí more than he initially showed. He stayed with Amanda, but still idealized his queen. For him, she forever remained an unattainable goddess, mother and guide, salvation and refuge. She forbade him visits and told him that he could only come when he received a written invitation. One of the "pillars" holding him up suddenly slipped.


Dali's life without Gala

When he turned 70, the artist fell ill with Parkinson's disease, which directly affected his painting. When Gala heard that, she got very angry. She talked about him being useless, that he shouldn't exist if he didn't paint. She became greedy and scared for her future. In addition to all the love they once shared, she also saw a source of money.

Gala died a few years later, and Dali completely withdrew into himself and did not leave the dark rooms of his home. He refused to drink water and thus almost caused death. His behavior was interpreted as suicidal...

He spent the last years of his life in the private rooms of his museum, in complete darkness and severe depression.

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