Salvador Felipe Jacinto DalÃ Domenech, Marquis of Pubol (May 11, 1904 ? January 23, 1989), popularly known as Salvador DalÃ, was a Spanish (Catalan) artist and one of the most important painters of the 20th century. He was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking, bizarre, and beautiful images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. His best known work, The Persistence of Memory, was completed in 1931. Salvador DalÃ's artistic repertoire also included film, sculpture, and photography. He collaborated with Walt Disney on the Academy Award-nominated short cartoon Destino, which was released posthumously in 2003. Born in Catalonia, Spain, DalÃ insisted on his "Arab lineage," claiming that his ancestors descended from the Moors who invaded Spain in 711, and attributed to these origins, "my love of everything that is gilded and excessive, my passion for luxury and my love of oriental clothes."
Widely considered to be greatly imaginative, DalÃ had an affinity for doing unusual things to draw attention to himself. This sometimes irked those who loved his art as much as it annoyed his critics, since his eccentric manner sometimes drew more public attention than his artwork. The purposefully sought notoriety led to broad public recognition and many purchases of his works by people from all walks of life.