Happy Birthday, Dalí!

On May 11, 1904, Salvador Dalí Doménech was born. He was indulged and adored by his parents, and early on, he exhibited artistic talent and a propensity for attracting attention. Turning the ordinary into the extraordinary was at the root of Surrealism, and it was also the special gift of Salvador Dalí. Like his relatives, Dalí came from a long line of story makers and he regularly embellished his past.

Schoolboy memories of Salvador Dali

Dalí’s holiday home was located in coastal Cadaqués, on the Cap de Creus Peninsula in Catalonia, Spain. Isolated, rustic, and punctuated with dramatic rocks of spectacular shapes, this small fishing village provided Dalí with a visual dictionary that would stay with him throughout his long career.


Organic and morphing shapes, depicting the play between soft and hard forms, and shocking viewers with the unexpected were all classic Dalí. The Persistence of Memory exhibits all these things, but it is also said that just prior to painting those famous dripping clocks, Dalí had consumed some very runny Camembert.


Although scorned by the art world, Dalí used his wild imagination to create commercial projects that opened up the realm of art—transforming him into one of the most popular artists in the world.


It is timely that in the birth month of Dalí, Laurence King’s exciting new book series is launching with This is Dalí, This is Warhol, and This is Pollock. Inspired by the readability of graphic novels, these books contain a breezy narrative voice accompanied by specially commissioned illustrations that present the life and work of each artist within engaging biographical context. Great care was put into selecting an illustrator simpatico with each artist’s work. For example, Peter Arkle is the illustrator for This is Pollock.


The series features 30 great artists and one architect. Next up in the fall are This is Bacon and This is Gaugin—stay tuned for release dates.

To commemorate Dalí’s birthday, share your favorite Dalí painting in the comments below for a chance to win a copy of This is Dalí plus an exclusive tote bag celebrating the series.

Debra Matsumoto
Marketing Director, Laurence King Publishing

Debra Matsumoto

Debra Matsumoto is the US Publicity & Marketing Manager for Laurence King. Her favorite day is spent getting lost in a museum, and yes, she has always loved to color.

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