The Shape of Dreams explores 500 years of dream-inspired paintings from the 16th to 20th century, demonstrating how artists throughout time have depicted a profound yet universal phenomenon of human experience — the dream. The exhibition will examine how Western artists have depicted dreams for very different audiences throughout time, exploring the continuity and disconnections between the past and present.
The exhibition features a selection of art on loan from American institutions, including the National Gallery of Art, Detroit Institute of Arts, The New Orleans Museum of Art, Saint Louis Art Museum, Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Chicago Art Institute and Metropolitan Museum of Art. Several works from The Dalí’s permanent collection are placed in dialog with these works. The exhibition includes some reproductions to ensure visitors can experience the essential images to our curated story of dreams.
Drawing on the irony that dreams are an intense visual sensation most often taking place when the eyes are closed, the exhibition inspires questions about the very nature of reality and encourages viewers to examine dreams through different lenses — psychological, religious and metaphysical. Works by Frida Kahlo, Paul Delvaux, Pat Steir, Philip Guston, Max Beckmann, Lodovico Carracci and Odilon Redon, many of which are monumental canvases, address manners of representation and consider how the waking world influences the dream. The exhibition seeks to understand how these artistic expressions shape our imaginations.
The exhibition is organized by The Dalí and curated by Dr. Hank Hine, Executive Director of The Dalí.
Read what visitors have said about this special exhibition:
“I loved how interactive it was and seeing how my dreams manifested into artwork was a delight”
“I enjoy seeing the same concept expressed by different artists in different periods”
“…a unique experience that was thought provoking”
The Dalí’s Dream Tapestry
Featured in the exhibition is The Dalí’s latest innovation, Dream Tapestry, which offers visitors the opportunity to see their own dreams transformed into works of art. The experience was developed by The Dalí in collaboration with Goodby Silverstein & Partners, together with Minds Over Matter and OpenAI – the creator of the image AI system DALL·E.
This special exhibition is included in the price of general admission. To reserve your ticket for this exhibit, book your visit during the exhibit timeframe (Nov 25, 2022 – Apr 30, 2023). Tickets are typically available up to 60-days in advance.
Download the free Dalí Museum App to enjoy the audio tour, available in both English and Spanish.
See our calendar of events to discover programming inspired by this exhibition.
This exhibition contains nudity.
The presenting sponsor of The Shape of Dreams is Therapedic | Tommy Bahama Mattresses.
Thank you to our supporting sponsors Antinori & Weinman Families, Aveda Florida, BNO Creative Labs, and Sandy Taraszki & David Zuern.
Thank you to the airport partner of The Shape of Dreams, St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) and the hotel partner TradeWinds Island Resorts.
This exhibit is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Arts and Culture and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture (Section 286.25, Florida Statues).