The Morses and Dalis developed a close personal relationship with Dali often offering Morse first dibs on newly completed works; hence, the Morses compiled an extensive collection in the 40+ year period. With seemingly vain efforts to keep the collection together and to avoid estate taxes, Morse's offering of the works was published in "The Wall Street Journal". St. Petersburg Attorney James Martin enlisted the support of city leaders and officials to acquire the collection.
Martin and Richard Dodge (Director of Leisure Services) presented the city for consideration to the Morses and finally reached an agreement that the Marine Research Center's warehouse would prove suitable as its location on Tampa Bay is reminiscent of the Cadaques area where Dali's parents had a summer home (and is subject of several early works).
Foundations were established, $2,000,000 appropriated, and building redesign/work started immediately. Today the building and grounds are exquisite and serve the city very well indeed.
For us the current exhibitions of botanical prints: "Fruits and Flowers", "The Essential Dali" and "Dali's Bronzes", along with permanent drawings, prints and paintings were exciting and stimulating. I highly recommend the tours which provide details, insights and humor. In selection of a favorite piece, the responses basically went to the very large, elaborate and classical paintings with which the tour culminated (see below). However, I found some of the smaller classical works were equally as, if not more, impressive. There's currently talk of moving the museum inland from its shore site to protect it from waters and flooding. This collection is so wonderful . . . it's a shame to lose this building but I'm glad the value is recognized and this move is under consideration. Check out the museum's website (www.salvidordalimuseum.org) and see if you don't agree that the collection is awe-inspiring and well presented at St. Petersburg's beautiful Salvador Dali Museum.
Results 1-10of 17 Reviews
Luzerne County, Pennsylvania
December 27, 2012
Bexar County, Texas
December 23, 2012
From journal Orlando,Tampa, St Pete 2012
by terri shelly
San Antonio, Texas
December 15, 2012
From journal orlando fam trip nov 2012
From journal Fam Trip to Florida
November 20, 2012
by Travel'in Gal
October 21, 2008
From journal Our Really. Big Florida Adventure!
December 30, 2006
From journal Clearwater, Orlando, and Daytona
December 27, 2003
From journal St Pete Beach early December
August 31, 2003
From journal Tampa Getaway
Clifton, New Jersey
February 12, 2003
The collection, gathered for over 25 years by the Morse family, reflects Dali's work from his student days until his death. The permanent collection houses such famous works as "The Disintegration of the Persistence of Memory," "The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus" and the very large "The Hallucinogenic Toreador," which seems to have its own gallery. Of course, the majority of the museum focuses on Dali's work and the number and diversity of pieces in the museum is very impressive. Allow yourself at least 2 hours to really take in all the museum has to offer. The other revolving collections feature various surealists and other artists associated with Dali.
As for practicalities, the museum is very easy to locate from downtown St. Petersburg. There are interstate exits and signs. The museum is open every day and has a late night Thursday. The guides are *excellent* and I strongly suggest trying to arrange your arrival to meet up with one. If that is impossible, the museum pamphlets are very informative and available in several languages. Each piece is also well-marked and grouped according to period in Dali's life. Admission is a bit steep -- $12.50 for adults -- but discounts are available on Thursday nights after 5pm (it's $5 then).
The Dali Museum is really geared more towards adults than children. There are no special exhibits or facilities for kids and I imagine they will get bored unless they are art lovers. The gift shop is one of the better stocked that I have seen and has something for everyone, from posters, to books, to ties.
From journal Thanksgiving in St. Petersburg