Typical view [?]
LOCATION: Accuracy: Read me
Beautiful building that does a very poor job of displaying the paintings and an excellent job of getting every cent it can out of you while making you smell soup.
It is on the water so you might see gulls, probably will see pelicans, might see night wading birds.
45 minutes to an hour and a half?
I'm going to be unenthusiastic here and there's going to be some foul language. It does have some very nice paintings and you'll probably enjoy it. That said...
The old museum was a single story building by the water by the USF campus not far from here - and it is still there. They freaked out in 2004 with all those hurricanes (Katrina being one) and suddenly realized that they could be flooded during a storm... so soon after they built their monstrosity of a building.
The old one - It had about as much space as what is used in the new museum (aka only the top floor is used for actually displaying art in the new one). BUT - even when they had an exhibit in town they displayed the paintings in a way you felt like you were understanding the progression of his art. I've only been to the new one once and it was while another was there and maybe the order of the paintings was unusually off but it just seemed random and meaningless. I got more out of going on the website and looking at what they have than actually being there for a lot of the paintings. At the old one it went through the childhood stuff with paintings of his sister then the height of his surrealist stuff then ended in a big room where his later large paintings seemed even larger than they were with good lighting and sense of space. Now his big paintings look tiny and I found myself walking past them not wanting to bother with the crowd. And that's another thing - it's too crowded. They are successful at getting people in there but man does it just make the experience suck. Multiple times you'd have a horde of assholes surrounding a painting like their headphones gave them some personal right to own this painting. The docents - I've never been watched suspiciously by someone so intently then have them fall all over themselves to push the elevator button - weird. There are two ways to get to the actual art - 3 flights of stairs that are too narrow to comfortably pass people going up or down - and an elevator. It's fine but if we're paying a ton of money to get in here now so you design this wonder of the world building to badly display the art - shouldn't people be able to both ascend and descend the stairs without a plan? I mean how do you fuck this up? When you're going up and down those stairs or just peering down from the top story you're flooded with stinky steam from food being cooked - you're looking right down into the kitchen/cafe on the ground floor 30ft down. It smells wrong and I wonder how many kids drop garbage in the food from there. The grand finale is the exit (and enter) through the gift shop. Dali logos and melting clocks on socks, jocky shorts, mugs, jigsaw puzzles - I might have seen a Dali branded home pregnancy test kit and radon test in there.
Parking - it is a huge lot for this and the concert hall - aka it is not a sparse commodity - and they charge $10. Fuck you Dali. Seriously - just Fuck you. You could at least put signs up on how you get out - every gate is closed and we toured the entire lot before squeezing out the entrance. Then the admission - $24 per person for a small museum is shit. If they could only be the one museum in the region that doesn't do reciprocal memberships as well that would match of perfect.... checking.... and... check - assumption correct.
Dali was a shameless self promoter though so maybe this is the museum he would have wanted.
All that said -
His most famous paintings aren't here but so many paintings are that you can forget. Several from his high times in the late 20s / early 30s, probably all of his paintings from the 60s and 70s when nobody really cared about him anymore. I'm not sure which are famous but I think these I've seen on tshirts and I'm seeing them in some art books I have just now - The melting clocks one ("The Persistence of Memory" - @ MOMA in NYC) isn't there but another version he painted 20 years later is ("The_Disintegration_of_the_Persistence_of_Memory"). The one with the tigers is not (Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee Around a Pomegranate a Second Before Awakening - @ Madrid). The Lugubrious Game is in some 1%er's 9th bedroom somewhere. Metamorphosis of Narcissus is at the Tate in London.
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