Salvador Dali, The Persitence Of Memory (detail), 1931
The Persistence of Memory is by far Salvador Dali’s most recognizable painting, and there are many references to it in popular culture. Although it was conjectured that the soft melting watches were the result of Dali’s interpretation of the theory of relativity, Dali himself state that their inspiration was camembert cheese melting under the sun. The sequence of melting clocks in a disjointed landscape is the depiction of a dream that Dali had experienced, the figure in the middle of the painting being the face of the dreamer himself. The general interpretation is that the painting, which portrays many melting watches, is a rejection of time as a solid and deterministic influence.