Salvador Dalí was born on May 11, 1904, in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain to a well-off Christian family. His family lived in Figueres, but spent summers in Cadaqués, Spain, where he studied painting under family friend, Ramón Pichot. Dalí gained admission to San Fernando Academy of Art in Madrid in 1922, after Pichot convinced his father to allow him to apply. Dalí experienced a lot of success while there; however, his time there was short-lived. He often challenged authority at the academy and encouraged his peers to do the same, leading to his removal in 1926. In 1929, Dalí joined forces with Luis Buñuel to create the short Avant Garde film Un Chien Andalou, bringing the two international fame. That brought him to Paris, France, where he was quickly accepted into the Surrealist group. During World War 2, the dropping of the atom bombs brought inspiration to Dalí, who was fascinated by the advances of modern science and wanted to incorporate that into his art. At the same time, his spirituality and dedication to the church was growing, leading him to combine the two into what he called “nuclear mysticism,” which was meant to express what he saw as a unity of the two and his belief that it was proof of a divine power.
Exhibit currently on display at the Museum of Biblical Art.