What is the secret and philosophy behind Salvador Dali’s famous mustache: And what he used to «sculpt» it with

During his life, Dalí was surrounded by geniuses as great and as crazy as himself. Federico Garcia Lorca, Pablo Picasso, Walt Disney, Alfred Hitchcock. His life, like his work, was an incredible adventure, full of recklessness, childlike spontaneity and creativity. He even worked in a special way. For example, Dali liked to fall asleep in broad daylight next to the easel, and when he woke up, immediately begin to draw what he dreamed. And about the incredible actions of Dali and those shocking images in which he appeared in public, in general, there are legends. His strange, cheerfully twisted long moustache has always caused a lot of gossip in society: everyone was trying to figure out what their secret was.

The artist himself believed that the mustache is just an expression of the mood and even the state of mind of its owner. Thus, in his diaries Dali uses an interesting term — «psychopathology of mustache». As an example, he cites the writer Marcel Proust and the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. Their dull mustaches, according to the artist, give them depressive neurasthenics. But the mustache of the artist Diego Velasquez Dali defined as «cheerful».

About his own mustache painter said that they are «joyful and full of optimism». He stated that they were very similar to Velasquez’s mustache and the opposite of Nietzsche’s gloomy mustache.

Dali first grew a mustache when he was 18. At first, however, they weren’t strange at all. But gradually he began to experiment with their length and shape, trying to give the mustache the look that would make him as a creator particularly mysterious

In the mornings, during the standard bathing procedure, Salvador Dalí paid special attention to the care of his moustache. They had to be properly prepared for the long day. He combed his thin mustache and gave it a certain look and trajectory, and every day it was different.

Dali himself joked more than once in his lifetime (and with a very serious look) that dates help him to achieve the perfect shape and length of his mustache. He loved to eat them and after a meal he wipes his sticky fingers on his mustache, after which it is very easy for him to give them the desired shape. For example, this is how he answered one of the ladies he knows, who asked him a question about the secret of his mustache. The artist told her about dates, and, interestingly enough, she believed him. Dali himself told about it in his diaries.

In fact, the secret was simple: he simply used a styling product. At least, Dali’s impresario after his death recalled that every time after morning tea he sat in front of the mirror for at least 10 minutes and slowly and very carefully «molded» his mustache, like a sculptor. He used wax for this purpose.

Moreover, as the impresario assured, on particularly important days, the artist could even build up his mustache, making it longer with his own shorn hair, which he brought home after a visit to the barber and specially kept for such occasions.

Usually the artist’s mustache grew very quickly — he only had time to trim it. The record length, as Dali himself admitted, was 25 centimeters. But at a more mature age, again by his own admission, his mustache began to thin. Therefore, afraid of losing the last hairs, the elderly Dali did not trim them. Apparently, mustache extensions were a particularly important procedure for him at that time.

It is worth noting that Dali’s mustache did not always express «cheerfulness». And far from always they looked upwards, as we are used to seeing in his portraits and photographs. Sometimes he could twist them in the most incredible way: for example, in different directions. And if he was in a bad mood, his mustache would not curl up, but stick out like twigs.

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