A new museum dedicated solely to the works of Salvador Dali is set to open in Florida today and will be the permanent home of the most comprehensive collection of the surrealist’s art work in the world.
The 66,450-square-foot museum in St Petersburg has been given a fittingly striking design by world-renowned architect Yann Weymouth, who helped to create the glass pyramid at the Louvre in Paris.
Similar glass panelling has been used for the exterior of the Dali museum, along with reinforced concrete, which is able to withstand a Category 5 hurricane.
Inside there will be a grand ‘double-helix’ staircase in the centre of the museum, which reaches nearly the full height of the 75-foot-high atrium.
When visitors reach the top of the staircase, they will enter the exhibition space containing the permanent collection of over 2000 items, including 96 oil paintings, 125 drawings and watercolors, 2,500 prints and photographs, 250 objets d’art, and a 5,000 book library.
The new $36 million building is twice the size of Florida’s original Dali museum, which was built in 1982.
The first level of the museum will feature a 90-seat theatre, 150-seat community hall, a café and a museum shop. The museum will also host special family activities, film screenings, curator talks and yoga classes.
The core of the museum’s art was collected by an Oho couple – philanthropists Albert Reynolds and Eleanor Morse – who enjoyed a long friendship with the artist. They bought their first Dali painting in 1942 and continued to collect the artist’s work throughout their lives.
As published in Mail Online