I just finished watching one section of a four-part television series detailing the lives and works of Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol by Alistair Sooke on YouTube. The Salvador Dali documentary is the one I chose to watch first. I didn't realize he was involved in films and commercials. The commercial he did for Alka Selitzer was interesting when he plunged his paint brush into the women's chest and explained how the medicine flowed through her whole body using paints and a flower to describe the satisfying effect of the medicine. It had me wondering what he was going to do next, especially with that crazy white superhero costume. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owJFJxHVNuc
In my opinion, Dali was doing more than just selling a product, he was giving the public media Surrealism. This is fascinating because he takes Surrealism and applies it to everything he does. Wherever Dali went Surrealism followed.
Surrealism is trying to get into the subconscious mind. Dreams were one of the vehicles to get into the subconscious mind in order to draw out what is hidden or suppressed. Although Dali was a master in the Surrealism movement, he becomes obsessed with certain objects and people that he painted more than once. Just to name a few, his wife Gala, lobsters, eggs, and weird shapes that are replica's of rocks off the coast of Cadaques Spain were seen in a lot of his paintings. These objects and people I just mentioned aren't hidden in your subconscious mind, I think Dali was a genius in order to put together the "reuniting conscious and unconscious realms" in a way that the viewer is put in a subjective position to interpret what he sees
according to his own experiences in life.
I think Salvador Dali's contribution to the arts is amazing. He set the path for future artists to justify their different techniques and ideas in the arts.
Here is the YouTube link to watch BBC Modern Masters four-part series: It's worth your time!