Lot 356
  • 356

Salvador Dalí & in collaboration with Salvador Dalí

100,000 - 150,000 USD
Log in to view results
bidding is closed


  • Salvador Dalí & in collaboration with Salvador Dalí
  • Montre molle, projet pour un hologramme (I) & Melting Clock Hologram (II)
  • I: Signed Salvador Dalí (upper center)
  • I: Pencil on card
    II: Holographic glass in carved frame with LED spotlights
  • I: 29 1/4 by 22 3/8 in.; 74.2 by 56.8 cm
  • II: 24 by 18 in.; 60.9 by 45.7 cm


Acquired from the artist in 1975


Selwyn Lissack, "Dalí in Holographic Space" in Spie Professional, vol. IX, no. 1, January 2014, illustrations of the hologram pp. 34-37
Selwyn & Linda Lissack, Dalí in Holographic Space, Charleston, 2014, fig. 11-3, the drawing illustrated p. 83


I: Work is in very good condition. Executed on card, not laid down. Sheet is fixed to mount at two points along upper edge. All four edges are slightly irregular and the lower right corner is slightly undulating. Minor scuffing along extreme left and right edges. Artist's pinholes present in lower corners. There is a faint flattened crease and an associated tiny tear across the lower left corner and a small tear across the tip of the upper right corner. Sheet is lightly time-darkened. Some faint media stains toward right lower edge. II: Clock is in pristine condition. No visible surface marks. Accompanied by two LED light bulbs. Teardrop element at lower left is detachable.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion.

Catalogue Note

Throughout his career, Dalí wanted to be more than just a traditional oil painter. He accomplished this in two ways—by experimenting with the visual image and by working in varied media. Through writing, filmmaking, fashion design and object construction, Dalí broadened his perspective and pushed the boundaries of representation. Dalí's creative artists' primer, “The 50 Secrets of Magic Craftsmanship” led him to explore science more fully in his paintings in the 1950s and physics became his utmost preoccupation in this regard, with the artist going so far as to state in 1958 that: “My father today is Dr. Heisenberg!” Fascinated by the concept of multiple dimensions, Dalí experimented famously with stereoscopic images (see lot XXX) and yearned to further free his represented objects from the image plane— to make them into something completely different, undermining stability and adding a level of chaos to his work. 

In 1971 while staying at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City, Dalí was approached by the South African artist/holographer Selwyn Lissack, who was pioneering the nascent science of holograms (which had won their inventor, Dr. Dennis Gabor, the Nobel Prize in Physics that same year). Over the next four years Dalí and Lissack collaborated to produce seven holographic works of art including The Crystal Grotto and The Brain of Alice Cooper, both currently housed at The Dalí Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida. Dalí became one of the first artists to exploit holography and was captivated by the concept which allowed him to create an image in three dimensions where he could be in front of and behind his subject.

In the winter of 1975, Dalí made one of his last trips to New York where he approached Lissack about a final hologram. In his suite at the St. Regis, Dalí executed the present pencil drawing as a blueprint of sorts. “In the weeks that followed, we discussed the many aspects about how the clock should look, including how large and how deep the hologram would be and how far the hands should project through the image plane. Dalí decided that the hands would appear to be melting, and that placement of his signature would be on the face of the clock, where typically the maker’s name would be. Roman numerals were chosen for the numbers, so that it would have a classical look and feel, untouched by time” (Selwyn & Linda Lissack, op. cit., p. 84). In addition to being his last, Melting Clockwas by far Dalí’s most ambitious holographic concept. So much so that the physical limitations of the holographic mechanisms used during the 1970s and 1980s did not allow for Dalí’s vision to be realized prior to his death, and indeed it was not until the advent of single wavelength LED lights three decades later that the original design could be fabricated according to his specifications.