Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Surrealism, Science Fiction and Comics$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Gavin Parkinson

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781781381434

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781381434.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of
date: 20 October 2017

Ten Recipes for Immortality: A Study in Dalínian Science and Paranoiac Fictions

Ten Recipes for Immortality: A Study in Dalínian Science and Paranoiac Fictions

Chapter:
(p.213) 10.Ten Recipes for Immortality: A Study in Dalínian Science and Paranoiac Fictions
Source:
Surrealism, Science Fiction and Comics
Author(s):

Elliott King

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781781381434.003.0011

From recent scholarship on the artist, one might take it that Salvador Dalí was extremely well versed in scientific theories, however the extent of his understanding is not clear. A discovery of physics evidently informed works such as Saint Surrounded by Three Pi-Mesons (1956) but that is not the totality of the painting. His ‘scientific’ canvases consist of both the initial scientific or technological inspiration and, more dominantly, the fantastical narrative Dalí develops from it. Dalí gave himself permission through the paranoiac-critical method to illustrate not simply what was directly observable but additionally – or even instead – his own unique associations. Indeed, he might wholly misunderstand a scientific concept and then, even upon realising it, deliberately build upon his ‘error’. It is here that science fiction becomes a useful lens for considering the legitimacy of Dalí’s projections, which otherwise may strike the educated viewer as irresponsibly loose applications of scientific ideas. When SF employs scientific or technological innovations as springboards for creativity, one accepts – indeed, praises – it as a product of the imagination unconstrained by the parameters of fact. Similarly, Dalí’s pseudo-scientific ‘fictions’ should not necessarily be read as evidence that he simply did not sufficiently understand his sources; rather, he was – quite openly – drawing upon science in a specifically artistic way. This chapter explores Dalí’s Dix recettes d’immortalité (1973), which has never been discussed in the scholarly literature on the artist, under the rubric of SF, demonstrating how the genre allows us to appreciate both the science and subversion of that profoundly imaginative volume.

Keywords:   science fiction paranoia criticism painting

Liverpool Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.