THE GLASS ENIGMA – NEW HOME FOR DALÍ MUSEUM

Vanderlei J. Pollack - May 16, 2011
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St. Petersburg in Florida has been known especially to fans of the Spanish surrealist Salvador Dalí. It is now beaming with pride even more, as 2011 has brought a brand new gem of a sculpture, the new home for local famous Dalí collection.

The ‘Glass Enigma’ sounds like a place worthy to house Salvador Dalí’s works. This fascinating building housing the new Dalí Museum is the creation of Yann Weymouth, and took nearly two years to complete.

It was created to house a spectacular collection of Dalí’s art, which until then had been on display in another local museum. However, there never seemed to be sufficient light and space to house such an extensive collection and eventually, the museum leaders took up the challenge to raise enough money to build a brand new home for it.

The project was very complicated, but with many generous donations from both state and the public, the much needed $36 million was raised. The result is a mesmerizing glass structure which resembles a giant rain drop and consists of more than a thousand triangular-shaped glass panels, none of which is identical. The interior is dominated by the Helical Staircase. This element is rather significant as Dalí believed the helix to be evidence of the divine in nature.

The new structure brings more light and space; it is double the size of the former museum and finally, hundreds of the master’s paintings and other works of art may be on display at the same time. Also, they are much safer there as the building was designed to withstand a category 5 hurricane.

Local Café Gala, named after the maestro’s wife, features delicacies of the Spanish cuisine; there is also a separate student gallery, theatre and a classroom. The Glass Enigma was officially introduced in January 2011 and with its rather impressive collection and wonderful setting, it is likely to become a great hit of Tampa Bay.

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