Salvador Dali’s Stairway to Heaven
The Salvador Dalí‘s Stairway to Heaven exhibit is comprised of illustrations originally made for two very different literary works: a 1934 edition of Les Chants de Maldoror, a prose-poem by Comte de Lautréamont, and a 1960 edition of Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy. When Dalí created the first portfolio in the 1930s, he embraced Surrealism with its wildly imaginative dreamscapes. The lascivious lifestyle he and his wife led at this time is also evident in his work of the ’30s. By the time he illustrated Dante’s The Divine Comedy in the 1960s, Dalí had renounced Surrealism and become a born again Catholic. His personal life had shifted dramatically to embrace what he termed a divine or ‘mystical ecstasy’ which is evident in this second, celebrated portfolio.