Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech, 1st Marquis of Púbol (1904 – 1989), was a Spanish Catalan surrealist painter born in Figueras, Catalonia, Spain. Dalí was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. His best known work, The Persistence of Memory, was completed in 1931. Salvador Dalí's artistic repertoire also included film, sculpture, and photography.
The most notorious of the Surrealists because of his outrageous self-promotion, encouraged by his greedy wife Gala, who had been married to Paul Eluard before, Dali is IMHO one of the most talented painter and draftman of all times. His eccentric megalomania that was only a provocative game and a form of self-derision that few people really understood have pleagued him all his life. But he has his fans and admirers because his genius is unequivocal and the troubling charm that his work exudes will attract amateurs and the general public for the times to come.
His Enigme du Désir (Desire enigma), ma mère, ma mère, is symptomatic of the incomprehension that falls on Dali's work at times : it represents an indescriptible object that has no sense, no real form, no meaning. Probably like the desire itself was the message that Dali tried to convey.
This picture made in 1929 was bought in 1946 by Mr Oskar Schlag, a psychoanalyst living in Zürich, who hung it in his waiting room to see his clients's reactions. In 1981 the Staatsgemaldesammlungen Munchen bought it for £ 453,600 ( $ 816,180).