/ Sold, private collection
The year was 1945 and the first atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. Dali was profoundly affected by this overwhelming and cataclysmic event, which made Dali look for new ways to express, to find rational order to his works and even though Salvador Dali was already quite famous for his contribution to the surrealist movement. He always respected and had great passion for the classical forms of art. He admired the Italian Renaissance artist such as Michelangelo, Da Vinci as well as the old master painters like Vermeer.
Dali named his wife and muse Gala whose real name was Elena Ivanovna Diakonova. In this composition from c. 1945 entitled: My Wife, Nude, Contemplating her own flesh becoming Stairs, Three Vertebrae of a Column, Sky and Architecture. Gala sits aristocratically, naked except for a white handled cloth and a pearl studded barrette in her hair. Gala sits in a pose with her back to the viewer as she contemplates the same image but know this image of Gala takes on an architectural form with columns, stairs and other details surrounding a tiny figure of a man. Gala’s left shoulder becomes what it appears to be both a tower or a rocket-ship. The detail in her hair could serve both as a balcony railing of an edifice of the aforementioned pearl studded barrette. Nonetheless, the undeniably classical look to the composition makes one think that it almost looks like the work could have been painted during the Renaissance.