On the 8th August this week, it would have been Dalí’s 60th Wedding Anniversary.
Gala and Dalí’s marriage was a complex arrangement with many contradictions, Gala was Dalí’s muse, inspiration, business manager and devoted wife for over fifty years. They initially married in 1934 in a civil ceremony, and then again in 1958 in a Catholic church after Gala received special dispensation from the Pope. Gala was a divorcee, but a committed Catholic. She had previously been married to Paul Eluard, with whom she had a daughter Cecile.
Dalí loved the idea of a wedding, and had this to say in the book ‘Conversation with Dalí ’ (Alain Bosquet).
“Gala and I were already married legally when we received the blessing of the Church. The religious ceremony made the deepest impression on me: the pomp, the organs, the splendor, the seriousness,
etc .... My pleasure and my exaltation were so great that I wanted to marry her a second time immediately.
The couple lived together in Port Lligat, and in 1968 Gala moved into Pubol castle which Dalí had purchased for her; he was only permitted to visit with written invitation from his wife, one of the more stranger aspects of their relationship.
Marriage for Dalí was sacred, as he recounts in the book ‘Conversation with Dalì’ (Alain Bosquet).
It’s the sacredness that’s important……….. I want the world to know how sacred love is.
Dalí and Gala, the Russian émigré and the Surrealist eccentric, two characters from different worlds found each other through a chance meeting. Although there was plenty of eroticism in their relationship their marriage was not a conventional one. Dr Kovary, a clinical psychologist, says of their relationship’ it was more like a mother-infant affair; Gala sometimes called Dalí, my little son. They never had a ‘real’ sexual relationship’. Dalí, although Gala raised deep desires in him, had fear of physical contact.
Gala was his world, his whole life, as he states in the Bosquet book; ‘As far as I’m concerned, I feel that the person I love has to dull my wits. In this way I feel the maximum force of what’s known as the eternal feminine.