British ColumbiaOUR VANCOUVER

Vancouver first Canadian city to get special Dali sculpture

Local Dali fans have rare chance to see a masterpiece for a limited time

for CBC News

May 06, 2017

Vancouverites can view larger Dali sculpture  6:45

Vancouver fans of the Spanish surrealist Salvador Dali are in for a big treat. 

Dali's famous Dance of Time sculpture has been temporarily loaned to the Chali-Rosso Art Gallery, marking the first time the piece will be displayed in Canada.

ADVERTISEMENT

The iconic sculpture depicts the melting clock motif and stands just over 2 metres tall. It's made of pure bronze and it weighs almost half a tonne. 

"It is quite a big undertaking to bring it to Vancouver all the way from Europe," said owner and curator Susanna Strem.

"We had significant difficulty even getting it through the doors," added Oree Gianacopoulos gallery spokesperson. 

Dance of Time

The Dance of Time by Salvador Dali has been on display all over the world, including a stint in Beverly Hills. (Chali-Rossi Gallery)

Dance of Time was originally cast in 1984 in France. The piece represents Dali's interpretation of time as fluid and dancing beyond humans and the cosmos. It will be on display for the public until September at the corner of Hornby Street and West Hastings.

And there are 20 more Dali pieces on display at the gallery itself, four of which are part of a larger collection of solid bronze pieces.

Each unique piece showcases a different aspect of the master artist's abilities.

Gallery features

The dancing figures in Dali's Homage to Terpsichore both lack facial features. (Chali-Rosso Art Gallery)

On display is the Homage to Terpsichore rooted in the Greek mythological muse of dance. It features two women.

"One is more soft and fluid and the other is more angular and you'll notice that none of them have a face because it's every woman really," said Gianacopoulos. 

Dali's Alice in Wonderland. (Chali-Rosso Art Gallery)

Other motifs featured across Dali's work are featured in his Alice in Wonderland sculpture.

"Her hair is a bloom with flowers and her flowing gown," said Gianacopoulos. 

Dali had long been fascinated by Sir Isaac Newton, featured in Dali's Surrealist Newton. (Chali-Rossi Art Gallery)

Meanwhile, Surrealist Newton' is Dali's tribute to famed astronomer and physicist Sir Isaac Newton.

According to Gianacopoulos, Dali takes away his face and chest and stomach area because "people have forgotten that he was a human being as well."

Dali's Profile of Time shows a watch liquefying over a tree. (Chali-Rosso Art Gallery)

 And the melted clock returns in the Profile of Time — a second piece that explores the sculpture's subjective interpretation of time.

Education

Gianocopolous says bringing galleries like Dali's to the city is an important part of promoting art education in Vancouver.

"In Europe, children are exposed to art from a very young age, so it becomes as important to them as science and math, so as they grow up, art is a part of their lives.

"I notice that this isn't happening so much in Canada."

The Dance of Time will be in Vancouver until September. The gallery is both accepting donations and donating a portion of its proceeds from sales during this time to the non-profit Arts Umbrella.

With files from CBC's Our Vancouver

Start the day smarter
Get the CBC News Morning Brief, the essential news you need delivered to your inbox