Melting and Morphing

October 29, 2007 at 8:21 am (look, watch)

Last week I went to a Dali exhibit at the LACMA called Dali: Painting and Film. It’s interesting that if you go to the LACMA website, the image promoting the show is The Persistence of Memory (the famous melting clocks painting), even though in the exhibit that painting is way in the back, presented with no fanfare. It’s just such a famous painting that it can entice people to see the exhibit, and then they’ll learn about other things like Dali’s film collaborations with people like the Marx Brothers, Alfred Hitchcock, and Walt Disney.

For the movie Spellbound, Hitchcock hired Dali to design a dream sequence. In the exhibit, you could see preparatory paintings alongside the finished sequence. Here’s the sequence:

Dali also collaborated with Walt Disney on an animated short called Destino. He began work in 1946 and Disney abandoned the project in 1947, but decades later animators dusted off Dali’s sketches and paintings, animated the film, and released it in 2003. I wonder if Dali would like the finished product. I thought it was awesome (except that the heroine looks too standard Disney princess-y)–the way animation lets shapes morph and change works well with Dali’s style and interest in images that can be read in multiple ways. I couldn’t find the whole movie (it’s about 6 minutes) but here’s two little clips (the second is bad quality–sorry).


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