Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dali & I: The Surreal Story by Stan Lauryssens

Dali & I: The Surreal Story
3 out of 5: On a whim, Stan Lauryssens left his low-level job working in a Belgian cheese factory to become an art investment broker. Although he lacked any specialized knowledge or even interest in art, Lauryssens quickly became an expert at buying (and sometimes counterfeiting) paintings and drawings on the cheap and then selling them to foolish clients for millions. Lauryssens specialized in works by the painter Salvador Dali, who had reached celebrity status by the time of his death in 1989.

In this tell-all memoir, Lauryssens reveals the inner-workings of Dali's studio, including the significant contributions to paintings made by assistants and the rampant copying of prior artworks. According to Lauryssens, the Dali art market is rife with fraud, and only a small fraction of Dali works sold in the international art market are genuine.

Lauryssens's approaches his subject with refreshing honesty and fully recognizes his role in the fraudulent Dali market:

What about the Dalis I was selling as fast as lollipops? Perhaps they were lollipops: sweeteners to calm and satisfy MMC's ever-growing number of international clients. I was going through an inner crisis. Payback time would come; of that I was sure. When? Where? I couldn't know until I arrived, and even though it would be suicide, I tried to get there as fast as possible.

Dali & I is an entertaining romp through the corrupt world of high-end art.


bermudaonion said...

Oh my gosh! This looks fantastic. I had no idea it was a memoir. Great review.

Anonymous said...

This is the WORST I have EVER SEEN. The story is a complete lie. There are countless photographs and Film footage of Dali at work during the time this "author" says Dali fakes were being made. The author was a crook and went to jail and continues to slander Dali for only one reason,
MONEY. The book and Film are in the FICTION category.

Anonymous said...

I agree, any actor that gets involved in this, is really shooting themselves in the foot.

Gwen Dawson said...

Fact or fiction, the book is entertaining.