Slave Market with the Disappearing Bust of Voltaire (1940) by Salvador Dali

Slave Market with the Disappearing Bust of Voltaire - Dali, Salvador - 1940 - 2

Artwork Information

TitleSlave Market with the Disappearing Bust of Voltaire
ArtistSalvador Dali
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions46.5 x 65.5 cm
Art MovementSurrealism
Current LocationSalvador Dali Museum, St. Petersburg, FL, US
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About Slave Market with the Disappearing Bust of Voltaire

Salvador Dalí’s “Slave Market With The Disappearing Bust Of Voltaire” is a surrealistic oil painting produced in 1940. It is part of the Surrealism movement and one of his most effective double image paintings. The artwork depicts a market where a woman is watching people trading slaves, while the face of Voltaire appears to be positioned on an object to form a bust.

The painting creates an optical illusion that allows viewers to see two contradictory yet fully developed images depending on the angle from which they view it. This feature adds depth and complexity to the artwork, making it more interesting to analyze and interpret. It also highlights Dali’s skill as a surrealist painter.

The artwork can be viewed at Salvador Dalí Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida. Despite being produced over eighty years ago, its message regarding slavery is still relevant today. The depiction of human beings being sold like objects for profit reminds us of how inhumane society can be towards each other if we let greed consume us.

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