Skip to Main Content

The Transparent Simulacrum of the Feigned Image

Salvador Dalí (Spanish, 1904-1989). The Transparent Simulacrum of the Feigned Image, 1938. Oil on canvas, support: 28 1/2 x 36 1/4 inches (72.4 x 92.1 cm). Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York. Bequest of A. Conger Goodyear, 1966 (1966:9.3). © Estate of Salvador Dalí / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid

© Estate of Salvador Dalí / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid

Image downloads are for educational use only. For all other purposes, please see our Obtaining and Using Images page.

© Estate of Salvador Dalí / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid

Image downloads are for educational use only. For all other purposes, please see our Obtaining and Using Images page.

© Estate of Salvador Dalí / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid

Image downloads are for educational use only. For all other purposes, please see our Obtaining and Using Images page.

Salvador Dalí

Spanish, 1904-1989

The Transparent Simulacrum of the Feigned Image, 1938

oil on canvas

support: 28 1/2 x 36 1/4 inches (72.39 x 92.075 cm); framed: 33 7/8 x 41 3/8 x 2 1/2 inches (86.04 x 105.09 x 6.35 cm)

Collection Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York

Bequest of A. Conger Goodyear, 1966

1966:9.3

Currently On View

More Details

Inscriptions

signature, dated / front, lower left / Gala Salvador Dalí 1938

Provenance

Julien Levy Gallery, New York;
sold to A. Conger Goodyear, New York, April 1, 1939;
bequeathed to the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, January 15, 1966

Class

Paintings

Work Type

Oil painting

This information may change due to ongoing research. Glossary of Terms

In 1929, Salvador Dalí joined the artists of the Surrealist movement in Paris, sharing their belief in the importance of the subconscious and the freedom of the imagination. Subsequently, in the early 1930s, Dalí pioneered what he called the “paranoic-critical method” of painting—his inspired answer to making irrational images from the imagination and dreams look very real. He did not aim to illustrate specific dreams but, instead, sought to instill in his art their distorted sense of objects, time, and space. The title of this work is almost a warning against trying to rationally explain its imagery: “The Transparent (see-through) Simulacrum (a semblance of something) of the Feigned (not real) Image (a reproduction of something or a picture in the mind).”

Dalí often incorporated doubled or multiple images into his compositions, where one object can simultaneously appear to be something else entirely. The Transparent Simulacrum of the Feigned Image, for example, features a table on which rests a napkin and a bowl of food that can also be seen as a landscape in which the bowl becomes a bay and the contents appear to be distant mountains. The head floating on the right side of the work is that of Dalí’s wife, Gala, whom he often referred to as his inspirational muse. Many of his works, including this one, are signed with both of their names.

Back to Top