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18 Unbelievably Weird Stories Most People Don't Know About Salvador Dali

Updated July 12, 2021 31.9k views18 items

Salvador Dalí pretty much embodies eccentricity, and there is no shortage of wild tales from Salvador Dalí's life. Even his real name, Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech, Marqués de Dalí de Púbol, is wild. Born in Spain on May 11, 1904, Dalí became a master of Surrealist painting. Coincidentally, surreal is another word that happens to perfectly describe the man. Dalí battled normalcy at every turn, trying to say whatever he wanted to say in the weirdest way possible. Until his death in 1989, Dalí continued to up the stakes of his own eccentricity, constantly finding new ways to shock and amaze the world at large.

Like many of his fellow artistic brethren, Dalí did not limit his weirdness to his artwork but saw it affect every aspect of his life. In fact, it could be argued that Dalí’s life story was one big performance art piece, as he was constantly putting on some sort of show. Dalí’s unique style made him plenty of friends and nearly as many enemies, but it never failed to gain him attention, which he obviously craved. Dalí lived a life as distinct as his trademark mustache, and the world will never see his like again.

  • He Sold Fake Hair To Yoko Ono To Avoid Witchcraft

    Oddity tends to attract oddity, and so Salvador Dalí found himself within the same social circles as Yoko Ono, infamous wife of John Lennon. Ono requested that Dalí send her a clipping from his famous mustache, but Dalí wasn’t exactly happy to comply. She upped the offer to $10,000 for a strand of hair, and then Dalí was on board, but he still didn’t want to send her any actual hair. Instead, he rigged up a blade of grass to look like preserved hair, and sent that to her. His reason? Dalí seriously suspected that Ono would use the hair for witchcraft and wanted to trick her just in case.

  • He Had A Sort Of Sexual Thing For Hitler

    Franco was not the only fascist who gained Dalí’s attention and admiration. He also had quite the thing for Hitler. That’s not a euphemism, either, as Dalí was quite up front about his sexual attraction to the Fuhrer. He claimed that Hitler turned him on and that he dreamed of Adolf in the same way that most men dreamed about women. There’s a good chance that Dalí was mainly saying these things for shock value, but he also didn’t seem to have much problem with the things Hitler was doing in Germany.

  • Photo: NBCTelevision

    He Once Invited Cher To An Orgy

    It’s amazing that so much of Dalí’s bizarre behavior was non-sexual, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t have some kinks, too. Dalí and his wife Gala loved to host orgies, and they did so regularly. These events attracted a great number of important guests, including major artists and celebrities. In fact, Cher found herself invited to one such gathering, albeit unknowingly. Cher clued in to what was going on when she picked up what she thought was a child’s toy, and Dalí mentioned how nice it would feel on her nether regions. Cher bailed, but countless others came and went. 

  • Photo: Salvador Dalí / Wikimedia / Fair use

    He Stole His Friend’s Wife

    Naturally, Dalí’s love life was rife with controversy. Dalí fell head over heels for Elena Ivanovna Diakonova, a Russian woman better known as Gala. The two started a torrid love affair, but there was a slight problem, as Gala was already married to Dali’s friend and fellow painter Paul Eluard. Gala was 10 years older than Dalí, but that didn’t stop him from stealing the woman from his colleague’s arms. Oddly enough, Eluard didn’t really seem to mind, and he remained close with Dalí and Gala thereafter (and it's rumored that be remained one of Gala's many extramarital lovers). Other Surrealists saw her as a bit of a Yoko Ono figure, however.