By Howard Pousner
The High Museum of Art appears to be engineering a deeper appreciation for Salvador Dalí, according to reviews and commentary from national publications and blogs sparked by its exhibition “Dalí: The Late Work.”
Critical response is running favorable (with some reservations), much like the take of AJC freelance critic Catherine Fox, who termed the show “illuminating, fascinating and fun.” The New York Times’ recent review by staff critic Roberta Smith, headlined “Antics Aside, a Dalí of Constant Ambition,” was especially head-turning with its strongly positive assessment.
A look at some opinions:
“Dalí is overwhelmingly present — in photographs, on film, in quotations emblazoned on the wall — and is often fairly obnoxious, eyes abulge, signature mustache adroop. [However,] once the art takes over, this is a terrific, even shattering show.
“Had Dalí died in 1938, he would have had a very nice, neat, narrow niche in the history of art. By living and working as long as he did — he stopped painting in 1983 and died six years later — he left a legacy that is incalculably richer, psychologically and artistically, and much more instructive.”
“It is sad that this show will not travel. …It is well worth the trip to Atlanta.”
“In his lifetime, Dalí was heavily criticized for designing jewelry and collaborating on short films with Walt Disney, but these mass-market moves no longer seem heretical, thanks to Pop.”
“Sometimes kitsch, sometimes breathtaking, this exhibition adds momentum to the Dalí renaissance that began not with a museum show but in the auction houses.”
“I’d waited literally 40-plus years to see, most especially, ‘Santiago El Grande’ [a monumental painting that includes Dalí’s vision of the Crucifixion, an homage to Saint James (the patron saint of Spain) and an atomic explosion] and was mesmerized by its beauty and the immense scale of this 1957 masterwork.”
“Dalí: The Late Work”
Through Jan. 9. $18; $15 students and seniors; $11 children 6-17; free for children 5 and younger and members. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays; until 8 p.m. Thursdays; noon-5 p.m. Sundays. High Museum of Art, 1280 Peachtree St. 404-733-4444, www.high.org.