“The Smoke of Irascibility” is inspired by Purgatory, Canto 16 from Dante’s Divine Comedy. Two female figures with forlorn expressions directly face the viewer, with a third figure shrouded in shadows to the right. The two distinguishable figures hold each other for support. This work has a muted, grey palette. Mat in white and framed in rustic black. Information on reverse.
This wood engraving print is taken from a collective book of Salvador Dali’s illustrations of Dante’s The Divine Comedy. Dali was commissioned by the Italian government in 1950 to create a complete work of these illustrations to commemorate the 700th anniversary of Dante’s birth. After much dispute amongst the government powers over Dali’s self-admitted questionable morality, the exhibition and commission were cancelled. Dali had already become obsessed with the concept, so he decided to work with French fine art publisher Joseph Forêt instead. In 1959, the limited edition books were published. In May of 1960, and exhibition of 100 original watercolors by Salvador Dali illustrated 12,000 verses from The Divine Comedy.
About the Artist:
Salvador Dali (1904-1989) was a surrealist painter best known for his melting clocks. Dali was born in Spain to a wealthy family who encouraged him to pursue art. He studied in Madrid and later relocated to France where he met Pablo Picasso. His painting's typically featured dream-like motifs as he believed that dreams and imagination should take precedence over marginal human thought. Salvador Dali is widely regarded as one of the most influential artists of the 20th-century.
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