PDF 175-186 (Українська)


work of art
creative process
psychological mechanism
Salvador Dalí
psychological trauma
individual image

How to Cite



The article is devoted to the study of the psychological aspects of Salvador Dalí’s personality and creative process. Based on the analyzed data taken from cultural and historical conditions of the artist's life, as well as from biographical, autobiographical facts and works of art, the following groups of factors were found that influenced both the psychological characteristics and elements of the artist's creative products.

The group of macro factors includes geographical, in particular the tendency to portray the landscape, where the artist lived, as the background image in his paintings; global events (the image of the Civil War was used in the painting "Soft Construction with Boiled Beans: Premonition of Civil War" (1936)).

Micro factors include two subcategories: close social environment and personal events. The death of the elder brother had seemingly an intense influence on artist's personality and creativity that led to the development of guilt in the parents who treated Dalí in a special way, as their second and only son. This situation formed a sense of permissiveness and uniqueness that, becoming Dalí’s fixed personality traits, were manifested in art: the widespread use of free associations and a surrealistic approach in paintings.

Freud's ideas had an exceptional influence on Salvador Dalí, and led to the development of a unique method in his works of art - a paranoid-critical method that allows mixing real objects in paintings with the fantastic ones.

It is worth noting the influence of two strong childhood emotional impressions that have signs of psychological trauma: contemplation of the decomposition process of a hedgehog’s corpse and entomophobia of grasshoppers. These two events formed individual images that the artist often used in his surrealist paintings. Therefore, based on these facts we can talk about the existence of a certain mechanism that transform the image of psychological trauma into a permanent element of creativity.

The results of the study showed the presence of the following Dalí’s main personality traits: shyness (especially in childhood and adolescence), narcissistic personality type, alienation and closed nature, ambition and the desire for recognition.

Thus, it can be argued that there is a certain mechanism in the creative process that transforms the formed psychological traumas and phobias into stable symbolic elements of creative products. The consistent effect of certain events in a life on personality structure was established and, accordingly, the impact of such events on a choice of a certain style in creativity was revealed.
PDF 175-186 (Українська)


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