A self-styled “Renaissance Man,” Salvador Dalí’s talents stretched far beyond his extraordinary gifts as a painter and draughtsman; his expansive artistic repertoire also included film, sculpture, poetry, photography and theatre, often in collaboration with other artists. Dalí’s exquisite jewels, however, capture the attention and imagination like nothing else. A triumph of technical virtuosity and spectacular visual pyrotechnics, they embody the "love of everything that is gilded and excessive" of the man whose name André Breton turned into the anagram "Avida Dollars.”
The crowning glory of this ensemble of 39 jewels, which Dalí created between 1941 and 1970, is undoubtedly The Eye of Time. Originally conceived in 1949 as a gift for his wife Gala, The Eye of Time plays on the themes and myths that obsessed the artist’s thoughts and incorporates two of the most iconic Dalí symbols: the eye and the clock. Surrounded by rows of pavé-set diamonds and set in platinum with a cabochon ruby, the eye's pupil is made of three shades of blue enamel and brilliantly doubles as the face of a working Movado movement. Dalí entrusted the making of his jewels to the illustrious New York jewelers Alemany and Ertman, who made a limited number of pieces after the artist’s original designs and under his strict observation. There are three known examples of The Eye of Time, including one in a prominent European Royal collection, another which was formerly in the collection of The Owen Cheatham Foundation and which is now on permanent display at the Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí in Figueres, and the present work.
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