…and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ (Ephesians 3:8-9)
…may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—(Ephesians 3:18)
Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto
Dali i Domènech
(5/11/1904 – 1/23/1989)
I saw the image of Salvador Dali’s Crucifixion Hypercube (1954 oil on canvas painting) for the first time a few weeks ago and became fascinated with the concept of the Cross being depicted in the form of *hypercube.
Salvador Dali’s Life
The Spaniard, Salvador Dali’s life is, in itself by 20th century jargon, considered bizarre but I would use genius because of the level of his artistic and mathematical talents. I wondered what spiritual concept motivated and inspired him to paint the Crucifixion Hypercube and why in a cubist form?
According to the many articles and videos (including his biography in video form), Salvador Dali was a Catholic but in one article, by his own admission, he didn’t experience any supernatural event.
In fact, he was quite frightful of death. When interviewed by Mike Wallace on his television show 60 Minutes, Dalí kept referring to himself in the third person, and told the startled Wallace matter-of-factly that he did not believe in his death. (That’s because he feared death and didn’t want to face its eventuality.)
In the drawing of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, Dali inscribed: “Sometimes, I spit for fun on my mother’s portrait”.
Known for his flamboyant, cavalieristic behavior (haughty, disdainful, or supercilious: an arrogant attitude toward others), undoubtedly inspired by his uncontrolled creativity, causes a stir in the art world not understood by many or even by those who knew him personally.
Salvador Dali’s artistic endeavors were concentrated and influenced by three artistic movements:
Cubism: (early 20th century art movement, included pioneer Pablo Picasso. In Cubist artwork, objects are analyzed, broken up and reassembled in an abstracted form—instead of depicting objects from one viewpoint, the artist depicts the subject from a multitude of viewpoints to represent the subject in a greater context),
Dada: (involved visual arts, literature, poetry, art manifestoes, art theory, theater, and graphic design), and
Surrealism: (style of art and literature developed principally in the 20th century, stressing the subconscious or nonrational significance of imagery arrived at by automatism or the exploitation of chance effects, unexpected juxtapositions, etc)
So why the Hypercube? Dali combined all three of these artistic movements in developing the hypercube cross concept. He also involved his knowledge in mathematics with his understanding of the scientific dimensions of space (width, length, depth and height).
The most striking change Dali makes from nearly every other crucifixion painting concerns the cross. Instead of painting Christ on a wooden cross, Dali depicts him upon the net of a hypercube, also known as a tesseract. The unfolding of a tesseract into eight cubes is analogous to unfolding the sides of a cube into six squares. The use of a hypercube for the cross has been interpreted as a geometric symbol for the transcendental nature of God. Just as God exists in a space that is incomprehensible to humans, the hypercube exists in four spatial dimensions, which is equally inaccessible to the mind. The net of the hypercube is a three-dimensional representation of it, similar to how Christ is a human form of God that is more relatable to people. The word “corpus” in the title can refer both to the body of Christ and to geometric figures, reinforcing the link Dali makes between religion and mathematics and science. Christ’s levitation above the Earth could symbolize His rise above Earthly desire and suffering. The motif of the cube is present elsewhere: Gala is standing on one and the chessboard is made up of squares. (source: Wikipedia)
Salvador Dali “was sustained by a belief that science and religion were not enemies, that man’s discovery of the atomic nature of the universe proved the existence of God.” (source: BBC documentary).
By all accounts, Salvador Dali believed in God but had problems with his faith. Salvador Dali did not have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, at least it’s not even known to him how to have a relationship. He believed his life was like the rhythm of an atomic explosion–a one new kind of nuclear atomic mysticism.
- …may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—(Ephesians 3:18)
2. Usually, dimensions.
Earlier in his life, Dali in 1931 created an oil on canvas painting “The Persistence of Memory,” illustrating his innate understanding of space and time. This painting
shows melting clocks reflective that time is limitless relative to creation.
- …and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ (Ephesians 3:8-9)
- Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats. (Exodus 12:5)
- but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. (1 Peter 1:19)
Salvador Dali –
four-dimensional attempt to render the tesserakt
Ms. Mary Pacheco,
Christian Author, Website Designer, Website Consultant