Pope His Latest
Salvador Dali, one of the most extreme exponents of radical surrealism in art, has declared that he is returning penitently to the Church.
On holiday in Rome, he went out to Castelgandolfo last week to be received in audience by the Pope. He showed the Holy Father his latest painting, a surrealist version of the Immaculate Conception.
" He was very pleased and commended me for my change of heart," Dali told a B.U.P. correspondent afterwards. " I outlined for him my plans for my future work in painting, which will combine my surrealist experience with pre-Raphaelite renaissance classicism."
The painting of the Immaculate Conception is not yet finished but it represents Deli's first attempt in the new medium. In blue and yellow, it shows a disembodied figure of the Virgin Mary, with hands folded in prayer.
A ray of divine light is represented as splitting the head of the Madonna in two halves, in such a way that the entire figure is enveloped in this light.
Through the upper part of the Virgin's body can be seen the figure of Christ. In the foreground are a number of objects of still life representing the offerings brought by sinners to the Madonna.
These offerings float in space, like little planets. All the architectural elements, which form a kind of throne for the Madonna, are alsd suspended in space. The hands in prayer stand out predominantly, but they are not visibly attached to the figure of the Virgin.
" My visit to the Pope was symbolic," he explained. " I wanted His Holiness to be the first to see the beginning of my enterprise in the religious, mystical genre.
" He saw the painting and gave me his blessing, but I cannot tell you anything else about his appreciation of the painting. It would be indiscreet to reveal anything."