Artist: Salvador Dalí (Spanish, Figueres 1904–1989 Figueres)

Date: 1958

Medium: Oil on canvas

Dimensions: 88 7/8 × 75 1/4 in. (225.7 × 191.1 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: Gift of Drue Heinz, in memory of Henry J. Heinz II, 1987

Accession Number: 1987.465

Rights and Reproduction: © 2017 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York


Dalí's penchant for optical illusion and veiled iconography are evident in this painting. As seen from a distance, a rendition of Raphael's Sistine Madonna (after 1513; Gemäldegalerie Dresden) is situated within a gargantuan ear-a reference to the Passion of Christ. From close range, it is an abstract work composed of countless particle-like gray and pink dots, reflecting the artist's interest in nuclear physics.