The Surreal Landscape of Dali’s Mediterranean World

June 15, 2018

Explore the Surreal Landscape of Dali’s Mediterranean World
Clyde Butcher Reveals Dali’s Painted Landscapes as His Own Photographed Dreamscapes

St. Petersburg, Fla. (June 15, 2018) – Opening to the public on June 16, Clyde Butcher: Visions of Dali’s Spain delivers an inspiring glimpse into Salvador Dalí’s homeland. The Dalí commissioned Clyde Butcher, the famed nature photographer known as the “Ansel Adams of the Florida landscape,” to travel to Spain to capture a series of technically brilliant, epically scaled photographs that create a euphoric viewing experience. Throughout his career, Butcher’s photographs have altered people’s perceptions about the Florida environment, and now, will alter the understanding of the surrealist master and the landscape that made him. The Dalí’s new exhibition features 41 original photographs that transport viewers to the striking Catalonian coast, where they are invited to not only appreciate the beauty of Dali’s beloved environs but also to contemplate the landscapes from an alternate perspective.

For this project, Butcher was asked to produce a series of black and white photographs documenting the dramatic splendor of Dali’s world. “Butcher’s unique abilities to capture the power of light, land and water in black & white deliver spectacular insights into the landscape that had such a profound influence on Dali’s vision and obsessions,” said Hank Hine, Dalí Museum Executive Director.

The show will be Butcher’s first photographic study of Spain. Butcher’s photographs capture new subtleties of Dali’s beloved country, breathing new life into the vistas and inlets that comprised his dreamland. “Many people know that photographers Ansel Adams, Edward Weston and Wynn Bullock have influenced me, but very few know that Salvador Dalí also has had a major effect on my photography,” Butcher said. “I have long admired the unique flavor of his work. His intriguing compositions and ability to be true to his own way of expressing his view of the world has always been an inspiration to me. I felt an immense honor to be able to explore his home, getting an up close and intimate view of the place that made him who he was.”

As this exhibition demonstrates, Butcher captured the sublime beauty of Dali’s Mediterranean world in exquisite detail through large scale, super-sharp monochromatic images. The skills Butcher developed in his decades photographing Big Cypress and the Everglades enabled him to find new aspects and subtleties within Dali’s familiar dream world. Reynolds and Eleanor Morse, The Dalí Museum’s founders, first traveled to Dali’s Spain in 1956. During that trip, they made a profound discovery that Dali’s painted landscapes were not a product of his imagination, but were indeed very real. With each subsequent trip, they made sure to take time to locate and explore the physical locations seen in Dali’s works. With this series of photographs, Butcher brings an artist’s perspective to their discoveries. “Butcher did an incredible job of capturing the essence of this land that created Dali,” said Peter Tush, Dalí Museum Curator of Education and exhibit curator. “The series of photographs displayed in the exhibition truly takes the viewer on an epic journey. “

Beyond the exhibition gallery, The Dalí has announced a variety of programs to accompany the exhibit. Butcher himself will host book signings at The Dalí on June 30 (1-3 p.m.), September 29, and November 3. Visitors can also join Tush for a “Butcher + Dali” Coffee with a Curator session on Tuesday, July 3 at 10:30 a.m. In addition to these, The Dalí has several other programs in development for the duration of the exhibition, from photography workshops to an environmental talk about “Real Florida” with author and speaker Jeff Klinkenberg on August 9. Full events details will be available on the website,

The visually stunning exhibition runs through November 25, 2018.

“Clyde Butcher: Visions of Dali’s Spain” is co-organized by The Dalí Museum, Clyde Butcher and his family, and curated by Dalí Museum Curator of Education, Peter Tush.

The Dalí Museum, located in the heart of beautiful downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, is home to an unparalleled collection of Salvador Dalí art, featuring more than 2,000 works comprising nearly 100 oil paintings; over 100 watercolors and drawings; and 1,300 prints, photographs, sculptures and objets d’art.

The building is itself a work of art, featuring 1,062 triangular-shaped glass panels – the only structure of its kind in North America. Nicknamed The Enigma, it provides an unprecedented view of St. Petersburg’s picturesque waterfront. The Museum has attracted the world’s attention, and among the other distinguished awards it has received, it is the first and only museum in the Southeastern United States to be recognized internationally by the Michelin Guide with a three-star rating.

The Dalí Museum is located at One Dalí Boulevard, St. Petersburg, Florida 33701. For additional information contact 727.823.3767 or visit

Media Contact: Lorin Augeri | | 727.821.5155 x120