karin cyngiser asked
Does shirly know the art?
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen answered
It is not known whether Shirley Temple knew the artwork. There are no recorded public comments of her on the artwork.
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|Title||Shirley Temple, le plus jeune monstre sacré du cinéma de son temps|
|Material and technique||Gouache, pastel and collage on cardboard|
Painting > Painting > Two-dimensional object > Art object
|Location||This object is in storage|
Width 100 cm
Height 75 cm
|Accession number||2751 (MK)|
|Credits||Aankoop / Purchase: 1969|
|Age artist||About 35 years old|
Een prikkelcollectie (2000)
Een paraplu, een naaimachine en een ontleedtafel. Surrealisme à la Dalí in Rotterdam. (2013)
Collectie - surrealisme (2017)
Gouache > Drawing technique > Technique > Material and technique
|Geographical origin||Spain > Southern Europe > Europe|
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Author: Marijke Peyser
Salvador Dalí’s assemblage Shirley Temple, le plus jeune monstre sacré du cinéma de son temps portrays the American child film star Shirley Temple as a sphinx. A cut-out picture of her head was carefully placed on the body of this mythical monster, executed in pastel chalk and gouache. The sphinx, a winged lion with the head and upper body of a woman, was said to kill travellers if they could not solve the riddles it set them. Skulls, bones and the wreck of what was once a fine sailing ship surround the creature. Although death and destruction predominate, some of the figures in the background recall Dalí’s youth. In the distance, in the upper right corner, walks a minuscule man holding a child by the hand. It is probably a reference to the time when the artist felt safe with his father. The girl with the skipping-rope upper left calls to mind Dalí’s cousin Carolinetta, who died young. He portrayed her in many of his works. The bat above Shirley Temple’s head is an allusion to death, but may also relate to an incident in Dalí’s youth. The artist was around five years old when his cousin gave him a wounded bat. The care of the creature was not a success; soon Dalí saw that it was covered with ants. Out of pity he picked it up and instead of kissing it on the head – as he had intended – he bit it so powerfully that he tore it in half. Horrified he threw it in the sink and ran away. Dalí had a life-long fear of bats.
The world of film permeated the artist’s life; his name is linked to no fewer than fifty cinematographic projects. Although he worked on two Surrealist films with the Spanish filmmaker Louis Buñuel, they were both lovers of American movies starring Buster Keaton, Ben Turpin and Harry Langdon. They disliked European art cinema, which was saturated with culture. Dalí thought that ‘a film should be like a car, an aeroplane or a gramophone: intense, happy, pure, dynamic, sharp, funny, perfect’. In his essay ‘A Short Critical History of Cinema’ (1932) Dalí placed the Marx Brothers film Animal Crackers (1930) at the top of the evolution of the film comedy. It was Harpo Marx whom he praised most highly. Dalí went to Hollywood in January 1937 at Marx’s invitation. While he was there he portrayed Marx on the basis of sketches he made during the filming of A Day at the Races (directed by Sam Wood, 1937) in which the actor played the role of Stuff. Two years later he portrayed Shirley Temple at the height of her popularity.
 Dalí used this motif many times in his oeuvre, see for example Impressions d’Afrique
(no. 23) or the much later Dalí enfant avec son père (1971).
 Including the monumental triptych Landscape with a Girl Skipping Rope (1936), no. 16.
 Dalí 1952, pp. 29-30.
 Paris 1979, pp. 342-53.
 In 1929 Dalí and Buñuel made Un chien andalou. In 1930 they worked together on L'Âge d’or.
 Rotterdam/Barcelona/Madrid 2005, p. 119.
 Finkelstein 1998, p. 140.
 Venice/Philadelphia 2004-05, p. 283.
All about the artist
Figueras 1904 - Figueras 1989
Salvador Dali got to know the author André Breton - the founder of the surrealist movement - while he was studying in Madrid. In 1924, Breton wrote the first...Bekijk het volledige profiel