I think part of my decision to come to Spain was my intense draw to the work of Salvador Dalí, he has been and remains my favorite artist with his enigmatic designs and outlandish mustache, so when my friend DG-G suggested a drive down to Dalí House in Figueres and the Dali Museum in Cadaques I was completely on board. Form Barcelona is just a little over two hours drive to get to our destination, so an early Sunday trip was perfect, getting us back before Spanish dinnertime.
Booking in advance was a great decision as the guided tours only allow a small number of visitors into the house at a time. And for that I was grateful, as you really go to truly enjoy and experience the visit, instead of being packed like sardines into tourist spot as is the case of most of all of the Gaudí building. Dalí has a distinctly individual style that is excreted all over his house from the giant taxidermied bears in the foyer to the stone eggs on the patio, to the somewhat confusing Michelin Man statues surrounding the pool and back garden (a very curious American influence).
There were some interesting features built into the house including a picture window where Dalí could see at to the harbor and a mirror above his bed that Dalí arrogantly has put in place so that he would be the “first Spaniard to see the sun in every morning.” There is a room that reads “sexy den” to me where when standing in the center the sound of your voice in amplified throughout the room. This was reminiscent of the way sound travels in the lower level of Grand Central Terminal in NY – if you whisper in one corner of the arch way someone standing at the opposite corner can hear it as well as if you were standing next to them. A great architectural sound trick. The last really odd things was that Dalí has a small cage put in place to house a cricket. He kept this in his bedroom because he was afraid of the cricket and wanted to be reminded of that fear…I’m not sure why anyone would want to do this.
We took a long Spanish lunch at the seaside to grab some grub before driving towards the museum.
The museum offered many of the same wonders that the house did on a much larger scale. I remembered quite a bit hazily learning in a Parson’s Interior Design class learning about Dalí’s impotency and how that caused him to replace the genitals in his work with empty draws. This also explains the fascination that he has with eggs, as apparent from both places we visited. Unfortunately the lengthiness of our lunch stop (so hard to coordinate 8 people!) kept us from having enough time to see the jewelry exhibit that was housed in another portion of the museum. That means a second trip must most certainly be in order!