Dali, Marie and Me

Original Post Date October 02, 2013 at 12:29 PM

Von enjoys a day at the Dali Museum, and experiences a burst of synergy with her writing partner.

ArtsAlive sponsored Free Museum Day this past September 28th, and boy oh boy did we take advantage! Marie, my American English ambassador and co-collaborator onI Blew Up Juarez, had the great idea of visiting the Dali Museum, and dressing the part. I’m not big on getting fancy, but it was a gorgeous day, and Salvador Dali is one of my favorite artists, so in homage, I put the good foot forward.

A lovely, gauzy dress dotted with blue jasmine petals, symbolizing Dali’s favorite scent. The mixed warm colors of mauve and beige and salmon, a nod to his celebration of color. Dotted with strategically angled glitter, a jagged line of up and down points, much like Dali’s style of organizing his large canvases in triangle segments. To finish it off, colorful “hoop girl” earrings, a la the maiden represented in many of his 1940-50s era works. On my face, big green gadfly sunglasses.

Marie wore her own creation, an ankle length black skirt with a ruched black and white fishtail and complimentary blocked cutaway to the front. This reminded me of Dali’s surreal painting, Slave Market with the Disappearing Bust of Voltaire. Her ties around her neck and wrists were reminiscent of Dali’s cubist “Non-Art” piece of a woman bound to a cross. Marie’s signature piece was her wide straw hat with concentric, hypnotizing, black and white circles. Between the two of us, I think The Master would have felt complimented.

ArtsAlive knew this museum would be a draw to many Pinellas County residents, so they had segmented the courtyard by the time we arrived early morning. Our early bird effort got us within the first twenty people into the museum, so we enjoyed the movement in space, and really got to absorb the architecture, the galleries, and the ambiance before it got crowded.

As we strolled along, we stopped in front of The Horseman of the Apocalypse, a vibrant expressionist piece. I felt something visceral, unfamiliar, in the pit of my stomach, that grew around my heart and then the space between my ears. I was captured, nay, ensnared by this piece in a way that my passions could only convey. I felt I needed to comment, and as I did, Marie said, “I can’t believe you feel it too!” We looked at each other with excited relief in that, not only were we in the throes of synergy, but our shared question about I Blew Up Juarez was answered. She had a vision, and she immediately jotted notes. I became excited, watching her abuzz with creativity, feeling the level of excitement she was experiencing without having to say anything; it was real and tangible and it didn’t require any verbal exchange. To which, we figuratively patted each other’s backs in the thought of, damn, we do make a good creative team.

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