Portrait of Sigmund Freud, in profile.
Black pencil with light ink highlights on paper. .
21 x 12.5 cm, mounted on cardboard, framed.
A few small black ink stains at the bottom of the drawing.
The portrait bears an autograph annotation in pencil at the top, monogrammed: Portrait of Freud by Salvador Dali (London), annotation in the hand of Paul Eluard as indicated by a note from Lucien Scheler, owner of the drawing, on the reverse of the frame: Portrait of Freud by Salvador Dali executed in London in 1938. The inscription in pencil in the upper part of the sheet is from Paul Eluard who offered me this drawing.
Freud had a preponderant influence on Dali's painting (and that of the surrealists), who declared: "Freud showed us the way". The Spanish translation of "The Interpretation of the Dream" gave him the keys to his fears and neuroses linked to his childhood and adolescence marked by the death of his brother and his mother and an authoritarian education. Obsessed with Freudian theories, he went to Vienna three times to meet Freud, without success, and it was finally through Stefan Zweig that he met him in London in 1938. Freud, following this meeting, wrote to Zweig on July 20, 1938: "Until then, it seems, I was tempted to consider the Surrealists, who apparently chose me as their patron saint, as complete fools (let's say at ninety-five percent, as for absolute alcohol)... The young Spaniard, with his candid fanatic eyes and his undeniable technical mastery, made me reconsider my opinion. It would indeed be very interesting to study analytically the genesis of a painting of this kind.
This portrait was painted in 1938, after his meeting with Freud in London
Several studies and portraits of Freud by Dali are known, including the one done in 1938, kept in the Freud Museum in London.
Lucien Scheler Collection
Paul Eluard et ses amis Peintres, Centre Georges Pompidou, 4 November 1982 - 17 January 1983