This work is sold with a photo-certificate from Robert Descharnes.
As much intellectual as sensationalist, Dalí often looked to literature, history and the opera for inspiration. He created portfolios of drawings, etchings and engravings inspired by Bizet's Carmen, Dante's La Divine Comédie and Cervante's Don Quixote, but found the traditional printmaking methods too constricting and lamented the inability to use colour in the brilliant, bombastic way he envisioned in preparatory studies. In the early 1960s he began to incorporate collaged elements such as botanical and butterfly prints (and photographs) into his works on paper, and it was through a chance encounter while sifting through a print shop's bins that he was introduced to an alternative printing process. Phyllis and Sydney Lucas of New York City's Old Print Centre immediately hit it off with the established artist, encouraging him to translate his new works on paper into prints by lithography.
These illustrious collages, to be ultimately translated into lithographs (Michler & Löpsinger nos. 1586 & 1587) are the result of a period of collaboration, experimentation and reflection Dalí had begun in the sixties. Each a fully realized composition, capturing themes that were reflected in Dalí's work throughout his life; fruit and flowers that captivated the artist's imagination for not only their explosive colour but also for the power of their fertility, and butterflies, a symbol of continual metamorphosis and of the multiplicity of the soul itself. And then, of course, depicted in the familiar topsy-turvy Dalinian world; as he transforms these elements into mystical characters, striding around the composition, in action, all within these wonderfully deep and ominous landscapes. What adds further to the ingenuity of these works, and their multi-dimensionality, is how Dalí may have incorporated elements of iconic Currier & Ives prints into the compositions as collage elements, paying homage to the great 19th century American printmakers in an intimate take on American nostalgia, as he had already done in his 1971 series Currier & Ives.