Thursday, May 15, 2014

Mothers Day at the Dali Museum, St Pete

My parents came over to Tampa for Mothers Day weekend and I had only two days notice to plan something amazing. The majority of the big brunch places were booked solid. That's when we decided to take Mom to the Dali Museum in St. Pete. It's quite baffling that we have lived in Tampa for three years and not experienced this masterpiece. Mom was very excited, especially after learning we would be able to experience the Warhol Exhibit which has been extended through June 1.
Upon walking in, the first thing I noticed was the very large gift shop, selling items with Dali's patterns including umbrellas, shirts, martini glasses, espresso cups, clocks, prints and much more. I had to tell myself 10 times that I was on a wedding budget and to keep on walking, only to find out when I got home that I could shop their online store.
The Dali Museum building is a piece of artwork itself, with a large free-form glass bubble made from 1,062 triangular pieces of glass. Inside, there is a helical staircase which pays homage to Dali’s obsession with spirals. Audio tour was available for both the exhibits, explaining the artwork in detail. I thought I was familiar with both Warhol and Dali until this visit.
Dali's Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea
Growing up, I was always a huge fan of Dali's The Persistence of Memory. I have a print of it on my wall at home. While I thought I knew a lot about Dali and his collection, I really didn't. During this trip, I found a new piece of Dali's to obsess over. Walking up close to this huge painting, I saw a woman standing along the Mediterranean Sea. When I turned around to ask Gabe a question, I saw the reflection of Abraham Lincoln in his sunglass lenses. I was not expecting that - so of course, I grab my phone to see if it reflected the same way. Sure enough, Abe appeared like magic. This piece is called Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea and We learned that the painting was inspired by a Scientific American article Dali read about visual perception which investigated the minimum number of pixels needed to describe a unique human face. Dali was challenged by that question and set about making this portrait of Lincoln using 121 pixels. The photo above does not do this painting justice and you have to see this for yourself.
Geopoliticus Child Watching the Birth of the New Man
Another Dali piece which caught our attention was Geopoliticus Child Watching the Birth of the New Man. Geopoliticus Child reflects the new found importance America held for the world and for Dali. The man breaking from the egg emerges out of the “new” nation, America, signalling a global transformation. You can read more about this piece by clicking here.

Those are just two of the amazing pieces you will find at the Dali permanent exhibit. You could literally spend hours going from masterpiece to masterpiece. Along with the permanent collection, Dali has multiple traveling exhibits that comes through it's doors. Currently, you can find the work of Andy Warhol.
Andy Warhol's Art. Fame. Mortality. exhibit has been at the Dali since January. This exhibit was so popular that it received an extension until June 1st. I always remember Warhol's iconic pop art all throughout my life. It was amazing seeing it in person.
Warhol Campbell Soup and Heinz Ketchup
While I have seen many movies portraying Andy Warhol, it was a completely different experiencing his art in person. My Mom mentioned that my Godmothers husband Jude knew Warhol during his tenure at the Times in the 80's. Who would have known. If Jude were still around today, I am sure he would have been able to tell me some crazy stories!
Warhol - Jackie O
Remember that gift shop I mentioned above? Check out these umbrellas. I may have to find my way back to the Dali museum rather quickly to pick one of these up before our trip to Europe.
Visit the Dali Museum online for ticket prices and hours.

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