The Persistence of Memory - Open for Interpretation


Among the most famous paintings till date is the painting by the Spanish artist- Salvador Dali. Painted in 1931, it is titled as The Persistence of Memory. However, the original title in Spanish is La persistencia de la memoria. Since 1934, it has been in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City. We here shall be revealing some of the most interesting and must-know facts about this painting.

The painting may look odd to many of you, but it has a very deep meaning if observed through both mind and heart.

It depicts a fetus-like head lying on the ground. It seems as if a fish had been washed ashore and after struggling a lot, is destined to death now. Then there are four watches in this painting; three of them seem to be molted. The fourth watch doesn’t look deformed; it is orange in color and is lying on a table-like object. On the watch, you’ll find ants that seem attracted towards the center of the orange watch as if they have found something of their interest at the point.

This remarkable painting by Dali has earned him world-wide recognition at age 27. Different people may interpret the painting differently. The meaning of this painting is actually open for interpretation. Here I’m writing recognizing interpretation done by majority of people.

The painting looks disturbing along with and arousing curiosity among the viewers. Well, this is the specialty of Dali. His paintings usually depict ideas that lie on the edge between being curiosity and disturbance. His paintings speak for themselves; so is this one.

The title of the painting ‘The persistence of Memory actually speaks for itself as it is difficult to forget this painting and feelings after observing its contents. The landscape in this painting resemble Port Lligat-the home of Salvador Dali. Very often, Dali used such sandy beaches destroyed by old sail boats and other images he had seen as a child in his home town.

Not to forget amidst all these factors is a very important reality about Dali. He was a philosopher too. He also had a lot of interest in science and psychology. This painting is also nothing else than a collection of ideas that are related with dreams, perception of reality, time, birth, death, etc. The ants that look like attacking the orange clock in a way indicate the anxiety related with time.

As said above, The Persistence of Memory may have many interpretations-both meaningful and elusive. It is left to us by Dali to interpret the painting in the way we see it. Dali often called his paintings ‘hand-painted dream photographs’. Very truly said by him is what with which I conclude this article.

Source by Megha Batra

7 months ago Beltran 41 Views