Salvador Dali - Venus et Cupidon


Category Salvador Dali Tags drawings

Venus and Cupid

Medium: Original crayon and pen & Ink drawing, circa 1962, signed by the artist below centre


  1. Galerie André-François Petit, 122 Boulevard Hausmann, Paris 8: Their label verso.
  2. Collection of Stephane Petit (Inherited from Andre Francois, his father’s estate)
  3. 15/12/2020 Auction Art Remy le Fur & Assocs sale : Succession Stéphane Petit, Surréalisme, Dessins, Tableaux, Sculptures, Art Contemporain: Lot 115.

An article in “La Gazette Drouot” dated 20/11/2020 tells us something of the interesting provenance for our work. Andre-Francois Petit started his Gallery in 1961 specialising in Surrealism. Smartly dressed, polite and honest, he inspired trust. Dalí often hosted him in Port Lligat, Spain and his suite at the Hotel Meurice in Paris. During a 1967 “tribute to Meissonier” at the Meurice, Dalí signed a poster for him with the telling dedication “Pour Petit, le précurseur dalinien” (“For Petit, the Dalinian precursor”). In the 1970’s not an exhibition on Surrealism took place at a museum in London, New York or Tokyo without his being asked for loans. Stephane Petit inherited his father’s famous art collection and it is from his estate that our drawing comes. It was sold with about 20 other Dali drawings and numerous works by other artists.

Note: Dali made numerous works devoted to Classical deities and his fascination with erotica often drew him to the subject of Venus and Cupid which was the subject of many of his drawings, paintings and prints. Our “Bijou work” may be small but it is beautifully drawn and a great example of the genre. Dali was a master of using cursive lines and hatching with pen and ink to build a narrative. In our example a soft use of vcrayon, around some of the detail, produces a swirling effect. Although the drawing depicts nude figures it could not be said to be erotic. The fact that the great expert, Robert Descharnes, chose to illustrate it in his “Magnus Opus” suggests that he too was of this opinion.

Literature: Robert Descharnes: Salvador Dali: The Work, The Man, Published by Harry N Abrams, New York: Illustrated page 372

Authenticity: We have been in touch with Mr Nicolas Descharnes, the Internationally recognised Salvador Dali expert. He advises us that the work is genuine and is in his archives under reference d0621_1963. We are currently applying for certification which will be forthcoming.

Size: 10 x 15 cms