Salvador Dalí Net Worth at Death – Salary, Income, Earnings

Salvador Dalí Net Worth

Salvador Dalí had an estimated net worth of $20 million at death. Spanish artist and Surrealist icon Salvador Dalí is perhaps best known for his painting of melting clocks, The Persistence of Memory. He earned most of his income from his artwork. 

From a young age, Salvador Dalí was encouraged to pursue artistic endeavors, and he eventually studied at an academy in Madrid. In the 1920s, he went to Paris and came into contact with artists such as Pablo Picasso, René Magritte, and Miró, leading to Dalí’s first Surrealist phase.

Perhaps best known is his 1931 painting The Persistence of Memory, which depicts melting clocks in a landscape. The rise of fascist leader Francisco Franco in Spain led to the artist’s exclusion from the Surrealist movement, but this did not stop him from painting.

To calculate the net worth of Salvador Dalí, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets.

All debts, such as personal loans and mortgages, are included in total liabilities. 

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: Salvador Dalí
Net Worth: $20 Million
Monthly Salary: $200 Thousand
Annual Income: $4 Million
Source of Wealth: Artist

Learn More: Top 30 Richest People In The World

Early Life

Dalí was born Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dalí y Domenech on May 11, 1904, in Figueres, Spain, located 16 miles from the French border in the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains.

His father, Salvador Dalí y Cusi, was a civil lawyer and notary. Dalí’s father followed a strict discipline in raising his children – a style of education that was in stark contrast to that of his mother, Felipa Domenech Ferres. She often indulged the young Dalí in his art and early eccentricities.

It is said that the young Dalí was a precocious and intelligent child, prone to temper tantrums against his parents and classmates.

Consequently, Dalí was subject to angry cruelty from more dominant students or his father. The elder Dalí did not tolerate his son’s outbursts and eccentricities and punished him severely. Their relationship deteriorated when Dalí was young and was exacerbated by the competition between him and his father for Felipa’s affections.

Dalí had an older brother, born nine months before him and also named Salvador, who died of gastroenteritis. Later, Dalí often told the story that when he was five years old, his parents took him to his older brother’s grave and told him he was his brother’s reincarnation.

In the metaphysical prose he often used, Dalí recalled, “We resembled each other like two drops of water, but we had different reflections.” He “was probably a first version of myself, but thought too much in the absolute.”

Together with his younger sister Ana Maria and his parents, Dalí often spent time at their summer home in the coastal town of Cadaques. From a young age, Dalí produced very sophisticated drawings, and both parents strongly supported his artistic talent. Here his parents built him an art studio before he attended art school.

When Dalí’s parents recognized his immense talent, they sent him to drawing school at the Colegio de Hermanos Maristas and the Instituto in Figueres, Spain in 1916. He was not a serious student, preferring to daydream in class and stand out as an eccentric in the classroom, wearing strange clothes and long hair.

After that first year at art school, he discovered modern painting during a vacation with his family in Cadaques. There he also met Ramon Pichot, a local artist who was a frequent visitor to Paris. The following year, his father organized an exhibition of Dalí’s charcoal drawings at the family home. In 1919, the young artist had his first public exhibition at the Municipal Theater of Figueres.

In 1921, Dalí’s mother, Felipa, died of breast cancer. Dalí was 16 years old at the time and was devastated. His father married his late wife’s sister, which did not bring the younger Dalí closer to his father, although he respected his aunt. Father and son argued throughout their lives about many different issues, until the death of the elder Dalí.

Learn More: Top 30 Richest People In The World

Art School and Surrealism

In 1922 Dalí enrolled at the Academia de San Fernando in Madrid. He lived in the school’s dormitory and soon took his eccentricity to a new level, growing long hair and sideburns and dressing in the style of the late 19th century English aesthetes.

During this time he was influenced by various artistic styles, including metaphysics and cubism, which earned him the attention of his fellow students – although he probably didn’t yet fully understand the cubist movement.

In 1923, Dalí was suspended from the Academy for criticising his teachers and allegedly inciting a riot among students over the Academy’s choice of a chair.

That same year he was arrested and imprisoned for a short time in Gerona for allegedly supporting the separatist movement, although Dalí was actually apolitical at the time (and remained so for most of his life). He returned to the Academy in 1926, but was finally expelled shortly before his final exams because he’d declared that no member of the faculty was competent enough to examine him.

While in school, Dalí began to study many forms of art, including classical painters such as Raphael, Bronzino, and Diego Velázquez (from whom he adopted his characteristic moustache). He was also involved with avant-garde art movements such as Dada, a post-World War I anti-establishment movement. Although Dalí’s apolitical approach to life kept him from becoming a strict adherent, Dada philosophy influenced his work throughout his life.

Between 1926 and 1929, Dalí made several trips to Paris, where he met with influential painters and intellectuals such as Picasso, whom he admired. During this time, Dalí painted a number of works that reveal Picasso’s influence.

He also met Joan Miró, the Spanish painter and sculptor who, along with poet Paul Éluard and painter Magritte, introduced Dalí to Surrealism. By this time, Dalí was already working with styles of Impressionism, Futurism, and Cubism. Dalí’s paintings were associated with three general themes: 1) the universe and human sensations, 2) sexual symbolism, and 3) ideographic imagery.

All these experiments led to Dalí’s first surrealist period in 1929. These oil paintings were small collages of his dream images.

In his works, he used a meticulous classical technique influenced by Renaissance artists, which contradicted the “unreal dream space” he created with strange hallucinatory figures. Even before this time, Dalí was an avid reader of Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic theories.

Dalí’s most important contribution to the Surrealist movement was what he called the “paranoiac-critical method,” a mental exercise that appeals to the subconscious mind to enhance artistic creativity. Dalí used this method to create a reality out of his dreams and subconscious thoughts, mentally altering reality as he wanted it to be and not necessarily as it was. For Dalí, this became a way of life.

In 1929, Dalí extended his artistic exploration into the world of film when he collaborated with Luis Buñuel on two films, Un Chien andalou (An Andalusian Dog) and L’Age d’or (The Golden Age, 1930), which is famous for its opening scene – the simulated slashing of a human eye with a razor.

Dalí’s art appeared a few years later in another film, Alfred Hitchcock’s Spellbound (1945), starring Gregory Peck and Ingrid Bergman. Dalí’s paintings were used in a dream sequence in the film and supported the plot by providing clues to solving the mystery of the psychological problems of the character John Ballantine.

In August 1929, Dalí met Elena Dmitrievna Diakonova (sometimes spelled Elena Ivanorna Diakonova), a Russian immigrant 10 years his senior. At the time, she was the wife of surrealist writer Paul Éluard.

A strong spiritual and physical attraction developed between Dalí and Diakonova, and she soon left Éluard for her new lover. Also known as “Gala,” Diakonova was Dalí’s muse and inspiration and eventually became his wife.

She helped balance – or one might say counterbalance – the creative forces in Dalí’s life. With his wild expressions and fantasies, he was unable to take care of the business side of being an artist. Gala took care of his legal and financial affairs, negotiating contracts with dealers and exhibition makers. The two married in a civil ceremony in 1934.

Learn More: Top 30 Richest People In The World

Expulsion from the Surrealists

As war approached in Europe, particularly in Spain, Dalí clashed with members of the Surrealist movement. In a “trial” in 1934, he was expelled from the group. He had refused to take a stand against Spanish militant Francisco Franco (while Surrealist artists such as Luis Buñuel, Picasso, and Miró did), but it is unclear whether this led directly to his expulsion.

Officially, Dalí was told that his expulsion was due to repeated “counter-revolutionary activities involving the celebration of fascism under Adolf Hitler.” It is also likely that members of the movement were appalled by some of Dalí’s public antics. However, some art historians believe that his expulsion was more likely due to his feud with Surrealist leader André Breton.

Despite his expulsion from the movement, Dalí continued to participate in several international Surrealist exhibitions into the 1940s. At the opening of the London Surrealist exhibition in 1936, he gave a lecture titled “Fantomes paranoiaques athentiques” (“Authentic Paranoid Ghosts”) while wearing a wetsuit, holding a pool cue, and walking a pair of Russian wolfhounds. He later said that his clothes were a reflection of “plunging into the depths” of the human mind.

During World War II, Dalí and his wife moved to the United States. They remained there until 1948, when they moved back to his beloved Catalonia. These were important years for Dalí. The Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art in New York gave him his own retrospective in 1941.

This was followed by the publication of his autobiography The Secret Life of Salvador Dalí (1942). During this period Dalí abandoned Surrealism and turned to his Classical period. His feud with members of the Surrealist movement continued, but Dalí seemed undaunted. His ever-expanding mind had ventured into new subjects.

The Dalí Theatre-Museum

Dalí painted a series of 19 large canvases with scientific, historical, or religious themes over the next 15 years. He dubbed this period “Nuclear Mysticism.” During this period, his artwork developed a technical brilliance that combined meticulous detail with fantastic and limitless imagination.

In his paintings, he would use optical illusions, holography, and geometry. Images depicting divine geometry, the DNA, the Hyper Cube, and religious themes of chastity were common in his work.

Dalí worked hard from 1960 to 1974 to build the Teatro-Museo Dalí (Dalí Theatre-Museum) in Figueres. The museum’s building was formerly the Municipal Theatre of Figueres, where Dalí saw his first public exhibition when he was 14 years old (the original 19th century structure had been destroyed near the end of the Spanish Civil War).

The Church of Sant Pere, across the street from the Teatro-Museo Dalí, is where Dalí was baptized and received his first communion (his funeral would later be held there as well), and his birthplace is only three blocks away.

The Teatro-Museo Dalí first opened its doors in 1974. The new structure was constructed from the ruins of the old and is based on one of Dal’s designs. It is billed as the world’s largest Surrealist structure, containing a series of spaces that form a single artistic object in which each element is an inextricable part of the whole.

The site is also known for housing the artist’s widest range of work, from his earliest artistic experiences to works created in his final years. Several permanent exhibition works were created specifically for the museum.

Dalí also ended his business relationship with manager Peter Moore in 1974. As a result, other business managers sold all rights to his collection without his permission, and he lost much of his wealth.

A. Reynolds Morse and his wife, Eleanor, two wealthy American art collectors who had known Dalí since 1942, established “Friends of Dalí” and a foundation to help the artist’s finances. The Salvador Dal Museum was also established by the organization in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Learn More: Top 30 Richest People In The World

Final Years

In 1980, Dalí had to retire from painting due to a motor disorder that caused constant trembling and weakness in his hands. No longer able to hold a brush, he had lost the ability to express himself in the way he did best. Another tragedy occurred in 1982, when Dalí’s beloved wife and friend Gala died. These two events plunged him into a deep depression.

He moved to Pubol, to a castle he had bought and remodeled for Gala, possibly to hide from the public eye or, as some suggest, to die. In 1984, Dalí suffered severe burns in a fire.

Because of his injuries, he was confined to a wheelchair. Friends, patrons and fellow artists rescued him from the castle and brought him back to Figueres, where he made himself comfortable in the Teatro-Museo.

In November 1988, Dalí arrived at a hospital in Figueres with a heart condition. After a brief convalescence, he returned to the Teatro-Museo. On January 23, 1989, Dalí died of heart failure in his native city at the age of 84. His funeral took place at the Teatro-Museo, where he was buried in a crypt.

Paternity Case and New Exhibition

Dalí’s body was exhumed on June 26, 2017 by a judge in a Madrid court to settle a paternity case. Mara Pilar Abel Martnez, 61, claimed her mother had an affair with the artist while she was working as a maid for his neighbors in Port Lligat, a town in northeastern Spain.

The artist’s body was ordered exhumed by the judge due to a “lack of other biological or personal remains” to compare to Martinez’s DNA.

The Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation, which manages Dalí’s estate, filed an appeal, but the exhumation took place the next month. The results of the DNA tests revealed in September that Dal was not the father.

In October, the artist made headlines again with the announcement of an exhibition at the Dalí museum in Saint Petersburg, Florida, to commemorate his friendship and collaboration with Italian fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli.

They were best known for creating a “lobster dress” for American socialite Wallis Simpson, who later married English King Edward VIII.

Related Lists of Celebrities’ Net Worth

Or, browse all celebrities’ net worth

Who Are The 30 Richest People In The World?

The list of the world’s richest people can change from year to year, depending on their current net worth and financial performance. Here is the current list of the 30 richest people in the world, based on the latest Forbes list, and some interesting facts about each of them.

Learn More: Top 30 Richest People In The World

Leave a Comment

COVID-19 Took My Waiter Job, Then I Made 5-Figures From Home...Discover How I Did It!