by Danielle Robles
“I want my museum to be a single block, a labyrinth, a great surrealist object. It will be a totally theatrical museum. The people who come to see it will leave with the sensation of having had a theatrical dream.” — Salvador Dalí
Within the small town of Figueres, just a short two-hour bus ride from buzzy Barcelona, amidst dusty dirt roads and desolate streets, lies the greatest museum my eyes have ever laid eyes on. Having taken Art History in college, I of course knew that Dalí’s masterpieces were legendary, but this museum was on a completely different level of magnificence. Created in Dalí’s hometown by the artist himself in 1969, the ruins of the town’s old theatre were rebuilt to give a nod to the neighborhood’s most notable son.
Within the sprawling courtyards and colorfully painting buildings, the museum holds the single largest and most diverse collection of works by Salvador Dalí, the core of which are from his personal collection. Each corner and crevice of the astounding locale constain some form of abstract art. Simple entranceways have been transformed into giant mouths with the help of synthetic ears of corn and toy dolls, while holographic guests wine and dine in tiny rooms off the main hallway, and ceilings showcase 3D-esque renditions of classic work reminiscent of Michelangelo.
The highlight of this crazy place comes in the form of a 3D anamorphic living-room installation with custom furniture made to look like the face of Mae West when viewed from a certain spot.
As I strolled from room to room in complete awe of this madman's unparalleled genius, I couldn't help but attempt to place myself inside his mind. Climbing the winding staricases of the old theatre felt like ascending into a land of otherworldly proportions--a walking daydream of a man off the rails in the most stimulating way possible. If you're ever in Spain, do yourself a favor and check this spot out. It will change your life. Who needs drugs when you can trip out for days on the visual world inside Dalí's head?