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DateLecture
27 June 2019Salvador Dali: 20th Century Renaissance Artist
23 May 2019The Astonishing Master Mozart comes to London
25 April 2019Mad Men and Artists: How the Advertising Industry Exploited Fine Art
21 March 2019Elizabeth Vigee Le Brun
28 February 2019The History of Cartoons
24 January 2019The Lute within Old Master Paintings
22 November 2018Mary Magdalen – a Character Assassination in Art
25 October 2018Industrialism and Revival
27 September 2018An Overview of the Life and Work of William Morris
28 June 2018Visions of Jerusalem – William Blake and his Creative World
24 May 2018Same Old – Same New
26 April 2018Academie Royale and the Sun King
22 March 2018Three Great Families and their Gardens: Astors, Rothschilds and Sackville Wests
22 February 2018Alchemy and Adventure: A History of Exotic Colours and Poisonous Pigments
25 January 2018Belonging and not Belonging – Immigrant Experience in Modern British Art
23 November 2017The Wilton Diptych and the Artistic Culture of Richard II’s Reign
19 October 2017Art and Revolution: Russian Culture in the Twentieth Century
28 September 2017Mary Cassatt: An American in Paris
22 June 2017The Two Gustavs: Mahler and Klimt
25 May 2017The life and work of Isabella d’Este
27 April 2017Van Gogh and Gauguin
23 March 2017Fanny Burney – her Family and Friends from Diaries and Letters
23 February 2017Paint Brushes at Dawn
26 January 2017The Dollar Princesses
24 November 2016‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ – Artists Responses to Snow
27 October 2016English Furniture in the 18th Century – The Golden Age
22 September 2016Augustus John and Gwen John
23 June 2016America’s Realist Genius; the Art of Edward Hopper
25 May 2016Musical and Cultural Life in Shakespeare’s England
28 April 2016Looking at Portraits – a very English Taste
17 March 2016Thomas Heatherwick – ‘The Leonardo da Vinci of his day’ (Terence Conran)
25 February 2016Art Deco – High Style in the Roaring Twenties
28 January 2016‘Art in the Garden of God’ – Rembrandt, Vermeer and Hals
17 December 2015The Inventors of Christmas
26 November 2015We Three Kings: Music, Art, Legends and Poetry inspired by the Magi
22 October 2015Piero della Francesca – Modern Painter of the Renaissance
24 September 2015100 Years of Modern Art Explained
23 July 2015Joseph Wright of Derby and the Men and Art of the Lunar Society
25 June 2015Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes
28 May 2015“What the Dickens!” – an Illustrated Talk on the Life and Times of Charles Dickens
30 April 2015King George III: ‘The most cultured monarch, art collector and friend of America’
26 March 2015Barbara Hepworth, the Stones and the Sea: Influences of Yorkshire and Cornwall
26 February 2015Edouard Manet: The Rebel in a Frock Coat
27 November 2014Pub signs: the Artwork and the Stories They Tell
23 October 2014Great Photographs of the Twentieth Century
25 September 2014Scandal in Paris – John Singer Sargent’s Mysterious Portrait of Madame X
26 June 2014A Personal Heaven – the paintings of Stanley Spencer
22 May 2014The Stained Glass of Edward Burne-Jones
24 April 2014Grinling Gibbons: Carver in Wood and Stone
27 March 2014Virginia Woolf on Life and Art
27 February 2014Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style
23 January 2014Marc Chagall: Wandering Jew or Citizen of the World?
28 November 2013Puccini’s Life and Works
24 October 2013The Festival of Britain and its Design Legacy
26 September 2013The London Porcelain Factories: Chelsea and Bow
27 June 2013Le Corbusier: Colossus of the 20th Century
23 May 2013JMW Turner and the Art of Watercolour Painting
25 April 2013Goya: War and Peace, Revolution and Exile
28 March 2013At the sign of the Falcon: The Life and Works of Harry Murphy; Goldsmith and Silversmith
28 February 2013Threads of History: the World of the Bayeux Tapestry
24 January 2013The Genius of Robert Adam

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Salvador Dali: 20th Century Renaissance Artist Julia Musgrave Thursday 27 June 2019

Julia Musgrave gave us a well-researched, enlightening and humorous talk on the life and work of Salvador Dali. His father was a lawyer in Figueres where he grew up. He was born in 1904 and at the age of five Dali was taken to his brother’s grave and told by his parents that he was a reincarnated image of his brother who had died a few months before. They even gave him the same name. He started believing that this was true and it had a profound influence on his life.

Cadaques was one of his greatest sources of inspiration. Some of Salvador Dali’s paintings are based on the coastline of the town in North Eastern Spain. The sky, the sea, the rocks of Cadaques were very dear to Dali because it is where he used to spend his time during the holidays with his family. Julia showed slides of the rocks and explained the double images which Dali saw in them.

He had an unusual marriage. In August 1929 Dali met the love of his life, Elena Ivanova Diakonova, better known as Gala. Unfortunately she was already married to the French surrealist poet Paul Eluard. Dali didn’t mind “She was destined to be my wife” he said!

Julia brought to life for us this Spanish surrealist painter and printmaker influential for his exploration of subconscious imagery. Dali depicted with realistic detail a dream world where commonplace objects often metamorphosed in a bizarre and irrational fashion. He went through a period of impressionist painting, then he followed Serat before going into his surrealist period of eccentric and erotic painting with dual images. He met Sigmund Freud in 1939 after which he renewed his psychoanalysis.

Apart from being a painter, he was a writer, a poet, engraver, sculptor, architect, photographer, theatre designer and jewellery designer. He was as interested in science as he was in art and brought mathematics into his paintings. He was a complex psychopath, a rebel and a genius and we shall never see the like of him again.

Elaine Leaver
Programme Secretary