5 February 2009,
London, King Street
Price realised GBP 265,250
Estimate GBP 200,000 - GBP 300,000
Salvador Dalí (1904-1989)
Eléphant du triomphe
signed, numbered and stamped with the foundry mark 'Dali 3/8 CERA PERSA PERSEO SA MENDRISIO' (on the side of the base)
bronze with green and brown patina and polished bronze
Height: 104¼ in. (265 cm.)
Conceived in 1975; this bronze version cast at a later date in a series of eight plus four EA and two EF
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This sculpture is sold with a photo-certificate from Robert and Nicolas Descharnes.
The elephant, Salvador Dalí's iconoclastic symbol of the future and one of his favourite images, is often depicted atop mosquito-like legs, emphasising the contrast between robustness and fragility, much like the contrast between the past and modernity. The animal's jewelled saddle symbolises wealth, and the dawn of a new era is announced by a flying angel, trumpeting success and prosperity. Dalí's elephant exemplifies every individual's hope for abundance and good fortune in the future.
VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium
R. & N. Descharnes, Dalí: The Hard and the Soft, Sculptures & Objects, Paris, 2004, no. 651 (another cast illustrated p. 253).