Daddy Longlegs of the Evening-Hope by Salvador Dali

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Daddy Longlegs of the Evening-Hope!, created in 1940 using oil painting, falls between Salvador Dali’s periods of Classicism and Surrealism. Immediately upon viewing the painting, it caught my attention due to the extreme detail and abnormal nature of it (like most Dali paintings). Each of the objects in the painting itself is done with remarkable precision. The scene is viewing an apocalyptic desert-like field, intended to review the horrors of World War II, which during that time-period was a critical topic. With that being said, Dali used a plethora symbolic references to World War II in the painting.

In the upper left-hand corner of the painting is a cannon which is held up by a physical crutch, possibly symbolizing death and war. Two apparent objects spill out of the mouth of the cannon, a structureless jelly-like biplane and a ferocious whiteish-grey stallion. The airplane, along with the nearby winged figure, could be a possible representation of the saying victory born of a broken wing, as Dali explained. Dali felt that the use of air power would be a key victory factor in the war, which was proven partially true according to my knowledge of the outcome of World War II. The horse is painted in great detail, clearly in mid-gallop with its muscles and facial features created an with an obvious contortion possibly implying power, speed, and control. The white stallion symbolizes one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, tying into the Apocalyptical 1940s theme of the painting.

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Near the center of the painting is another jelly-like figure, which Dali refers to as a soft self-portrait.

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