2019 December Press Releases

Plains Art Museum to Exhibit North Dakota’s  First Major Exhibition of Salvador Dalí Works on Paper

Press Release
For Immediate Release (December 2019)

Your art museum is excited to present Salvador Dalí’s Stairway to Heaven—the first major Salvador Dalí exhibition in North Dakota. This exhibition will open on December 19, 2019 through May 20, 2020 in the William and Anna Schlossman Gallery, located on the Museum’s third floor.

Known as one of 20th Century’s foremost masters of Surrealism, Salvador Dalí (1904-1989) has ignited the imagination of international viewers and artists for decades. Salvador Dalí’s Stairway to Heaven portrays 143 works on paper in a comparative study of two of Dalí’s most celebrated portfolios: his book illustrations for the Comte de Lautréamont’s Les Chants de Maldoror (The Songs of Maldoror, originally published in 1868-69) and Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy (originally published 1320). Together, they express a progression in Dalí’s personal life in which he ultimately returns to order, reason and tradition, and presents his un-paralleled grandiose creativity.

“Beyond Dali’s irrefutable talent as a painter, he is also an enigmatic and talented filmmaker, writer, sculptor, and illustrator. Salvador Dalí’s Stairway to Heaven is an extraordinary opportunity for Plains Art Museum’s viewers to experience an exhibition of Dali’s masterful draftsmanship and imagination in illustrative works for The Divine Comedy and Les Chants de Maldoror. The exhibition, curated by David Rubin, displays an early and late career work of Dali’s in an incredible pairing of the two sets of illustrations created for two historically important literary works. It offers not only a chance to see Dali’s iconic surreal imagery and exquisite renderings, but also chronologically reveals a portrayal of redemption that is parallel to Dali’s own personal, social, and psychological development.” – Tasha Kubesh, Plains Art Museum Associate Curator of Exhibitions and Collections

Salvador Dalí’s Stairway to Heaven is curated by Los Angeles based curator, critic, author and artist David S. Rubin and has a fully illustrated catalog (with an essay by David S. Rubin), as well as a 407-page hardcover book titled Dalí–Illustrator by Eduard Fornés that accompanies the exhibition. David S. Rubin is a Los Angeles-based curator, art critic, author and artist who has been in the contemporary art field for more than forty years. Rubin served in curatorial roles at an Antonio Museum of Art, New Orleans’ Contemporary Arts Center, Phoenix Art Museum, MOCA Cleveland, San Francisco Art Institute and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and holds a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of California, Los Angeles and an M.A. in Art History from Harvard University. Rubin is currently listed in Who’s Who in the World, Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in American Art, and his curatorial archives are housed in the Smithsonian Institution’s Archives of American Art.

This traveling exhibition is organized by the Carole Sorell Inc. with generous support from the Park West Foundation and visits Hilliard Museum, Lafayette, LA; the Bradbury Art Museum, Jonesboro, Arkansas; Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia; University of Texas at San Antonio Main Art Gallery, San Antonio, Texas; Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Fort Wayne, Indiana; Mabee- Gerrer Museum of Art, Shawnee, Oklahoma; and Biggs Museum of American Art, Dover, Delaware.

In conjunction with this exhibition, Plains Art Museum will host a winter paella party with surreal desserts, soft and hard refreshments, activities, and a guided tour on Thursday, January 16, 2020 at 7:00 pm. This event is free for Museum members and $10 for the public and $5 for students. Native American artists are also free.

The Museum will also host a Film and Surrealism seminar on Thursday January 23, 2020 at 7:00 pm. Philosophy for All, along with Richard Gilmore, will present the free philosophical discussion, Film and Surrealism.

Finally, Plains Art Museum will host a variety of games at our Exquisite Corpse event on Thursday, April 16, 2020 from 6 – 8 pm. From Exquisite Corpse to Automatic Drawing to collage, the public is invited to drop in and reassemble reality with us at this free event! All supplies will be provided and a cash bar will be available.

Plains Art Museum is the largest art museum in the Dakotas and Western Minnesota and is general admission free thanks to strong and growing support from over 800 households and businesses. The Museum manages a permanent collection of over 4,000 objects, organizes and presents dozens of annual exhibitions, facilitates public art projects, and leads over 200 educational programs and experiences for all ages each year. The Museum, and its Katherine Kilbourne Burgum Center for Creativity, is located at 704 First Avenue North in downtown Fargo. For more information about visiting or supporting your art museum, visit plainsart.org.

Contact: Andrew J. Maus, Director & CEO, 701.551.6123, amaus@plainsart.org