The Dalí Legacy


How an Eccentric Genius Changed the Art World and Created a Lasting Legacy

“The secret of my influence has always been that it remained secret.”
– Salvador Dalí

Noted art historians Dr. Christopher Heath Brown and Dr. Jean-Pierre Isbouts unravel the meaning of Dalí’s mysterious quote in their new book, THE DALÍ LEGACY: How an Eccentric Genius Changed the Art World and Created a Lasting Legacy (Apollo Publishers/February 23, 2021/$26.99). In this hardcover volume, with more than 150 full-color images, Brown and Isbouts reveal why Dalí’s visual wit and enduring cult of personality still impacts fashion, literature, and art to this day.

One of the most prolific artists of the 20th century, at turns beloved and reviled, Salvador Dalí was a pioneer in establishing himself as a brand—the archetype of the nonconformista, the dangerously provocative but always exciting genius, who could seamlessly blend erotic themes with religious iconography. His shocking behavior and zest for publicity frequently alienated critics as well as prominent Surrealists. And yet, as THE DALÍ LEGACY shows, Dalí’s work broke new ground in a number of ways that are only now receiving critical attention.

What sets the book apart from other publications about Dalí is that Brown and Isbouts relate Dalí’s activity to the turbulent events of the mid-20th century. They unflinchingly explore his response to the rise of Fascism and the Spanish Civil War, as well as his close relationship with the Franco regime after World War II—timely topics given the rise of neo-nationalism and populism today. At the same time, they trace the source of the enduring autoeroticism in his art, as well as the impact of the Atomic Age, and the sexual revolution of the 1960’s. As such, they make a compelling case that the artist’s often fraught relationships and motivations explain why his art still manages to distress, perplex, and entertain to this day.

Brown and Isbouts previously co-authored three critically acclaimed books on Leonardo da Vinci, including Young Leonardo, The Mona Lisa Myth, and The Da Vinci Legacy. They have also produced two documentaries, The Search for the Last Supper and The Search for the Mona Lisa, which aired on PBS stations in the U.S. and numerous networks abroad.