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Salvador Dalí was an author, critic, impresario and provocateur. He became part of the art scene in 1929, and eventually became one of history’s most prolific artists. His fantastic imagery and flamboyant personality contributed to him becoming the best-known artist of the Surrealist movement during the late 1920s and early 1930s. He is known for his enigmatic and extraordinary paintings of dreamscapes and religious themes. Dalí always took risks in his art, as well as in his personal life and he fearlessly embraced his boundless creativity and created visionary work.
“Levi” is part of a religion-based series of prints that depict the “Twelves Tribes of Israel”. Each etching represents one of the tribes. Judah, Zebulon, Joseph, and more are included in this series. The Twelve Tribes of Israel, in the Bible, are the Hebrew tribes which were named after sons or grandsons of Jacob. His name was later changed to Israel, and the Hebrew people became known as Israelites. According to the Bible, Levi was the third son of Jacob and was also the founder of the Israelite Tribe of Levi or “the Levites”. The “Twelve Tribes of Israel” by Dalí is a series of thirteen etchings with a color stencil.
“Levi” is an example of how Dalí’s work was influenced by religious themes. In this image, we can see a man commandeering a large, beautiful ship through a body of water. The man on the ship is posed strongly, extending a sharp sword-like object in the direction the ship is heading. The ship is adorned with beautiful engraving and marks. There are large masts catching the wind and tugging the ship to its destination. The water has large waves that are fiery red, orange, and yellow in color. These waves are splashing against the bottom of the ship, presumably making the voyage a rough one. The sky above is a dreamy, light blue and land can be seen far in the distance. “Levi” is a 19.5 x 14.75- inch hand-signed etching with color stencil created in 1973.
Spanish Artist Salvador Dalí was a Surrealist icon best known for his articulate skill and exquisite works of art. Dalí is among the most versatile and prolific artists of the 20th century, partially due to his explorations of subconscious imagery. He practiced sculpting, printmaking, fashion, advertising, filmmaking and more. His flamboyant personality and mischievousness contributed to his rise to becoming an international celebrity, however, his mastery of art is arguably his most distinct attribute.