Cataloging Dalì's work - Art by Albert Field
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Albert Field
Cataloging Dalì's work

1958

About

L.T.S. (Lettre dactylographiée signée) Typewritten letter signed by Albert Field. Headed paper with double heading: in the center “The Salvador Dalì Catalog”, on the upper right “Compiler Albert Field, 20-25 29th Street, Astoria 5, N.Y.” addressed to the Countess Anna Laetitia Pecci - Blunt. Dated: 18th March 1958. One page, only front. In English. Very good conditions with usual folds in the paper and a rip on the higher left corner. Very interesting and amusing letter signed by Albert Field, the official compiler of Dalí’s work, for the Countess Anna Laetitia Pecci-Blunt. A thank-you letter for her "prompt and informative reply" to the previous Field letter of the 8th March 1958. "I must play detective all the time, and of course while this irritates me as a scholar, it fascinates me at the same time". The background: The Surrealist Dalí commissioned to Albert Field the creation of his Official Catalogue of Graphic Works, a guide to the artist’s works for collectors, dealers, gallery owners and museums: an opus magnum encompassing 40 years of production and comprising 1900 illustrations, of which 1500 in color. Albert Field was Dalí’s official archivist, besides the topmost authority regarding the artist’s work, who discovered approximately 17 types of falsification, as he reported to the St. Petersburg Times in 1987. Therefore, the catalog had the function of uncovering false Dalís scattered throughout the world. Nevertheless, Dalí himself reacted to the falsification phenomenon by saying: “Someone who is subjected to forgery the way I am must really be fantastically good''. An eccentric genius like Dalí thus found a kindred spirit in Mr. Field, an English, science, and maths teacher, as well as collector of playing cards, who had a passion for nudism and rambling, and who combined all of his interests by climbing the Appalachian Trail completely naked. At the sight of “Dream of Venus”, a Surrealist house of mirrors realized in 1939 at the World Fair and again in Dalí’s retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in 1941, his attraction towards the Catalonian artist became magnetic. They met for the first time in the 1940s, and since then they would often meet on Sundays at the St. Regis Hotel, where an adulatory Field would show Dalí photographs of his works to be examined: if he detected any forgeries, the artist would write ‘falso’ (in Spanish) on their backs. It was not until 1955 that Dalí asked Mr. Field to be his official archivist, exactly one year before this letter. In this way, a mammoth cataloguing workload was entrusted to Mr. Field, who traveled around Europe at least forty times, searching for authentic Dalí’s works, determining places and provenances of prints: a true mission that he carried out until the end of his days. References: F. NICOSIA, Dalì, Il Giornale, Milano, 2006 p.122

Details

  • Artist
    Albert Field (1916 - 2003)
  • Creation Year
    1958
  • Medium
  • Movement & Style
  • Condition
    Good
  • Dimensions
    H 11.03 in. x W 8.47 in. x D 0.04 in.H 28 cm x W 21.5 cm x D 1 mm
  • Gallery Location
    Roma, IT
  • Reference Number
    LU65033456171
  • Seller Reference Number
    M-95568
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