140 Salvador Dalí Quotes on Having a Surrealist Mind

Read and reflect on these Salvador Dalí quotes, which are full of powerful lines and messages to live by.

Salvador Dalí was a Spanish surrealist who was also known for his unique fashion sense. Dalí became famous throughout the world for his technical ability and the impressive images in his work.

Let us find out how he fell in love with Surrealism and art. Read our collection to gain new perspectives.

Begin reading here.

And make sure to check out these Frida Kahlo quotes and Vincent van Gogh quotes.

Best Salvador Dalí Quotes

1. “Don’t bother about being modern. Unfortunately, it is the one thing that, whatever you do, cannot avoid.”

2. “It is either easy or impossible.”

3. “Have no fear of perfection—you’ll never reach it.”

4. “A true artist is not one who is inspired, but one who inspires others.”

5. “I don’t do drugs. I am drugs.”

6. “What is important is to spread confusion, not eliminate it.”

7. “We are all hungry and thirsty for concrete images. Abstract art will have been good for one thing—to restore its exact virginity to figurative art.”

8. “Drawing is the honesty of the art. There is no possibility of cheating; it is either good or bad.”

9. “People love mystery, and that is why they love my paintings.”

10. “Surrealism is not a movement. It is a latent state of mind perceivable through the powers of dream and nightmare.”

11. “If you understand your painting beforehand, you might as well not paint it.”

12. “Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.”

13. “I’m going to live forever. Geniuses don’t die.”

14. “Everything alters me, but nothing changes me.”

15. “Man cannot change or escape his time. The eye sees the present and the future.”

Related: Pablo Picasso Quotes, Jean-Michel Basquiat Quotes

Inspirational Salvador Dalí Quotes

16. “No masterpiece was ever created by a lazy person.”

17. “The thermometer of success is merely the jealousy of the malcontents.”

18. “In order to acquire a growing and lasting respect in society, it is a good thing, if you possess great talent, to give, early in your youth, a very hard kick to the right shin of the society that you love. After that, be a snob.”

19. “The difference between false memories and true memories is the same as for jewels: it is always the false ones that look the most real, the most brilliant.”

20. “Repulsion is the sentry that guards the gate to all that we most desire.”

21. “Knowing how to look is a way of inventing.”

22. “I absolutely love life.”

23. “Since man’s highest mission on earth is to spiritualize everything, it is his excrement in particular that needs it most.”

24. “You have to create confusion systematically, it sets creativity free. Everything that is contradictory creates life.”

25. “Life is too short to remain unnoticed.”

26. “To gaze is to think.”

27. “If I’m going to be anything more than average, if anyone is going to remember me, then I need to go further, in art, in life, in everything!”

28. “Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary, rationalize them, understand them thoroughly. After that, it will be possible for you to sublimate them.”

29. “At the age of six, I wanted to be a cook. At seven, I wanted to be Napoleon. And my ambition has been growing steadily ever since.”

30. “Begin by learning to draw and paint like the old masters. After that, you can do as you like; everyone will respect you.”

Also read: Calligraphy Quotes

Wise Salvador Dalí Quotes to Live By

31. “I’m much more interested in speaking, or being near people who think the opposite of the things I think than with people who think the same things that I think.”

32. “I am an antipode of myself—alternately humble and convinced of my regal superiority.”

33. “An elegant woman is a woman who despises you and has no hair under her arms.”

34. “This is very important because I work constantly in the moment of sleep. All of my best ideas come through my dreams.”

35. “Let my enemies devour each other.”

36. “It is not me who is the clown, but this monstrously cynical and so unconsciously naive society, which plays the game of seriousness in order better to hide its madness.”

37. “Each morning when I awake, I experience again a supreme pleasure—that of being Salvador Dalí.”

38. “Genius has to pass over madness and madness over genius.”

39. “So little of what could happen does happen.”

40. “Give me 2 hours a day of activity, and I’ll take the other 22 in dreams.”

41. “Every morning when I wake up, I experience an exquisite joy—the joy of being Salvador Dalí—and I ask myself in rapture, ‘What wonderful things is this Salvador Dalí going to accomplish today?’”

42. “I love my enemies when they are intelligent as much as I hate the stupid ones who defend me.”

43. “It is not important for the public to know whether I am joking or whether I am serious, just as it is not necessary for me to know it myself.”

44. “The secret of my influence has always been that it remained secret.”

45. “I want to perceive and understand the hidden powers and laws of things, in order to have them in my power.”

Beautiful Salvador Dalí Quotes That Talk About Art and Painting

46. “The true painter must be able, with the most usual things, to have the most unusual ideas.”

47. “All of my knowledge, of both science and religion, I incorporate into the classical tradition of my painting.”

48. “The first man to compare the cheeks of a young woman to a rose was obviously a poet; the first to repeat it was possibly an idiot.”

49. “God is just another artist, like me.”

50. “This grandiose tragedy that we call modern art.”

51. “I do not paint a portrait to make it look like the subject, rather does the person grow to look like his portrait.”

52. “Painting is an infinitely minute part of my personality.”

53. “I myself do not understand what my paintings, meanwhile, I am painting them; does not imply that they are meaningless.”

54. “The terrifying and edible beauty of Art Nouveau architecture.”

55. “Paintings is only one of the means of my expression of my total genius, which exists when I write and when I live when in some way or other I manifest my magic.”

56. “The two greatest strokes of luck that can happen to a painter are to be Spanish and to be called Dalí.”

57. “It is good taste, and good taste alone, that possesses the power to sterilize and is always the first handicap to any creative functioning.”

58. “A painting is such a minor thing compared to the magic I radiate.”

59. “Progressive art can assist people to learn not only about the objective forces at work in the society in which they live, but also about the intensely social character of their interior lives. Ultimately, it can propel people toward social emancipation.”

Salvador Dalí Quotes on Surrealism and Ambition

60. “One day, it will be officially admitted that what we have Christened reality is an even greater illusion than the world of dreams.”

61. “What is a television apparatus to man, who has only to shut his eyes to see the most inaccessible regions of the seen and the never seen, who has only to imagine in order to pierce through walls and cause all the planetary Baghdads of his dreams to rise from the dust.”

62. “Surrealism is destructive, but it destroys only what it considers to be shackles limiting our vision.”

63. “I always carried a jewel-studded cigarette case in which, instead of tobacco, were carefully placed several mustaches, Adolphe Menjou style.”

64. “I believe that the moment is near when by a procedure of active paranoiac thought, it will be possible to systematize confusion and contribute to the total discrediting of the world of reality.”

65. “Let the labyrinth of the wrinkles be furrowed in my brow with red-hot iron of my very own life, let my hair whiten and my step becomes vacillating, on condition that I can save the intelligence of my soul.”

66. “Democratic societies are pretty unfit for the publication of such thunderous revelations as I am in the habit of making.”

67. “There is just one difference between a madman and me. The madman thinks he is sane. I know I am mad.”

68. “Paranoiac-critical activity makes the world of delirium pass onto the plane of reality.”

69. “Instead of stubbornly attempting to use surrealism for purposes of subversion, it is necessary to try to make of Surrealism something as solid, complete and classic as the works of museums.”

70. “Nothing proves the truth of Surrealism so much as photography. The Zeiss lens has unexpected faculties of surprise!”

71. “The difference between me and the surrealists is that I am a surrealist.”

Emotional Salvador Dalí Quotes About Love

72. “It’s better to have loved and lost, than have 40 pounds of laundry a week.”

73. “Forever will be you and me.”

74. “Where, if not in my own town, should the most extravagant and solid of my work endure, where if not here? The Municipal Theater, or what remained of it, struck me as very appropriate.”

75. “For me, love must be ugly, looks must be divine, and death must be beautiful.”

76. “I seated ugliness on my knee, and almost immediately grew tired of it.”

77. “I dedicate this novel to Gala, who was constantly by my side while I was writing it, who was the good fairy of my equilibrium, who banished the salamanders of my doubts and strengthened the lions of certainties.”

78. “It is mostly with your blood, Gala that I paint my pictures.”

79. “Beauty should be edible, or not at all.”

Salvador Dalí Quotes About Himself

80. “I am a contradictory and paradoxical man.”

81. “I am not strange. I am just not normal.”

82. “Since I don’t smoke, I decided to grow a mustache—it is better for the health.”

83. “Take me, I am the drug; take me, I am hallucinogenic.”

84. “I could not resign myself to the loss of a being on whom I counted to make invisible the unavoidable blemishes of my soul.”

85. “I am the Don Quixote of unreality.”

Insightful Salvador Dalí Quotes to Keep You Amazed

86. “Whoever wants to engage people’s interest must provoke them.”

87. “God invented man, and man invented the metric system.”

88. “I believe in general in death, but in the death of Dalí absolutely not. I believe in my death becoming very—almost impossible.”

89. “The one and only thing the world will never have enough of is outrageous.”

90. “The problem with the youth of today is that one is no longer part of it.”

91. “Before I was born, it was completely paradise—the moment of being born is the moment the paradise is lost. Death is the regain of this paradise.”

92. “Great wine requires a mad man to grow the vine, a wise man to watch over it, a lucid poet to make it, and a lover to drink it.”

93. “I shall be so brief that I have already finished.”

94. “Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing.”

95. “Liking money like I like it, is nothing less than mysticism.”

96. “The connoisseur does not drink wine but tastes its secrets.”

Interesting Salvador Dalí Quotes

97. “There comes a moment in every person’s life when they realize they adore me.”

98. “I do not understand why, when I ask for grilled lobster in a restaurant, I’m never served a cooked telephone.”

99. “Money is a glory.”

100. “There are days when I think I’m going to die from an overdose of satisfaction.”

101. “I am the first to be surprised and often terrified by the images that I see appear on my canvas.”

102. “My mother’s death supervened, and it was the greatest blow I had experienced in my life. I worshiped her.”

103. “Wars have never ever hurt anybody except the people who died.”

104. “Everyone should eat hashish, but only once.”

105. “The reason some portraits don’t look true to life is that some people make no effort to resemble their pictures.”

106. “When I paint, the sea roars, others splash about in the bath.”

107. “New skin, a new land! And a land of liberty, if that is possible! I chose the geology of a land that was new to me, and that was young, virgin, and without drama, that of America.”

108. “When we are asleep in this world, we are awake in another.”

109. “An unpredictable, faithful and objective hazard seem to have systematically singled out my life to make what are normally uneventful incidents violent, phenomenal and memorable.”

110. “Nobody dared to touch them. This was my test regarding the sacred aspect of mustaches.”

Intriguing Salvador Dalí Quotes About His Experiences and Principles

111. “I am very sorry, but I am infinitely more intelligent than these three professors, and I, therefore, refuse to be examined by them. I know more about Raphael than all of you altogether.”

112. “Many people do not reach their 80s because they spend too much time in their 40s.”

113. “The true painter must be able, before an infinite panorama, to limit himself to reproducing a single ant.”

114. “Now, sexual obsessions are the basis of artistic creation. Accumulated frustration leads to what Freud calls the process of sublimation.”

115. “You know, the worst thing is freedom. Freedom of any kind is the worst for creativity.”

116. “I tried sex once with a woman and that woman was Gala. It was overrated. I tried sex once with a man and that man was the famous juggler Federico Garcia Lorca. It was very painful.”

117. “If you refuse to study anatomy, the arts of drawing and perspective, the mathematics of aesthetics, and the science of color, let me tell you that this is more a sign of laziness than of genius.”

118. “God is present in everything. The same magic is at the heart of all things, and all roads lead to the same revelation: we are children of God, and the entire universe tends towards the perfection of mankind.”

119. “The famous soft watches are nothing else than the tender, extravagant, solitary, paranoiac-critical camembert of time and space.”

120. “I was never capable of being an average pupil.”

121. “Picasso is a painter, so am I; Picasso is Spanish, so am I; Picasso is a communist, neither am I.”

122. “Young people need plenty of difficulties to achieve something. If you receive a little money for this, a little money for that, everything becomes mediocre, and collapses ignominiously.”

123. “Happy is he who causes a scandal.”

124. “Sometimes, I spit on my mother’s portrait for pleasure.”

125. “The desire to survive and the fear of death are artistic sentiments.”

More Salvador Dalí Quotes

126. “I would either seem refractory to any teaching and give the impression of being completely dumb or I would fling myself on my work with a frenzy, a patience, and a willingness to learn that astonished everybody.”

127. “I am making things that inspire me with a profound emotion and I am trying to paint them honestly.”

128. “I think that the sweetest freedom for a man on earth consists in being able to live, if he likes, without having the need to work.”

129. “There is one thing more exasperating than a spouse who can cook and won’t, and that’s a spouse who can’t cook and will.”

130. “Photographic data is still and essentially the safest poetic medium and the most agile process for catching the most delicate osmosis, which exists between reality and surreality.”

131. “Right now, I’m the greatest. I don’t say this through vanity. It’s just that the rest are so bad.”

132. “Geniuses must never die, the progress of mankind depends on us.”

133. “But to awaken my zeal, it was necessary to offer me something I liked. Once my appetite had been whetted, I became ravenously hungry.”

134. “Just as I am astonished that a bank clerk never eats a check, so too am I astonished that no painter before me ever thought of painting a soft watch.”

135. “Physiological expenditure is a superficial way of self-expression. People who incline toward physical love accomplish nothing at all.”

136. “My art is capable of liberating man from the tyranny of the ‘practical, rational world.’”

137. “The world of the cinema and of painting are very different; precisely, the possibilities of photography and the cinema reside in that unlimited fantasy which is born of things themselves—a piece of sugar can become on the screen larger than an infinite perspective of gigantic buildings.”

138. “The mere fact of photographic transposition means a total invention—the capture of a secret reality.”

139. “Photographic fantasy—more agile and faster in discoveries than murky subconscious processes!”

140. “When the creations of a genius collide with the mind of a layman and produce an empty sound, there is little is at fault.”

What Did These Salvador Dalí Quotes Teach You About Self-Love?

In Madrid, Salvador Dalí received a formal education in fine arts. Surrealism and avant-garde movements piqued his interest from a young age. In 1929, he became a member of a surrealist group.

His painting abilities were attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. The Persistence of Memory, Dali’s most famous work, was completed in August 1931.

He was not only a surrealist artist but also a man who adored himself. His quotes and lines were shreds of evidence of how proud he was of his abilities and skills.

Loving oneself is indeed the most crucial lesson in life and happiness. We hope that this collection inspired you to love yourself more and be as ambitious as possible!

Which quotes were most relevant to you? Share your thoughts down below!


Recommended Reading

Amy Finn

Hi. I'm Amy, the founder of this blog. I love quotes and enjoy sharing the best ones with you.

Leave a Comment