Abstraction - Formal Elements

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The painting the Persistence of Memory by Salvador Dali's is one of his famous paintings. The painting visually tries to explain dreams and unconsciousness. Like most painters Dali used formal elements to define his work of art. Some formal elements like line, shape, form, space, texture, light and color helped to explain his perception of the unconscious states of mind in his painting.

Dali uses a quantity of straight, crooked, and wavy lines in his construction. Taylor explained that the landscape of the artwork says a lot about the piece. The directions of the lines help you understand the piece better whether they are vertical or diagonal. His work features a closed pocket watch and three clocks. The lines of the clocks are crooked to the degree where they appear to be melting. The lines give a different affect to the painting. This use of line expresses the feeling that the distinctions of time are blurred, while developing the picture that time moves or melts. When looking at the painting you feel as if the objects over moving. This element of lines shows how unique the painting truly is and the effects it gives off. Line brings about balance which helps understand the painting.

Dali uses shape to explain the moods and feelings experienced by the unconscious mind. His shapes are a combination of symmetrical objects. These symmetrical images are the organic tree ,the sea and the non-symmetrical clocks and what seems to look like a carcass on the ground. The flat shapes create the illusion of three dimensions. Talyor expresses that the line and the shape of a painting can both affect each other. It all depends on the height and width of the painting. Overall the formal elements help the painters create their work and I feel it helps the viewers get a better understand of what is taking place in the painting. The shades of color from dark to light green and light to a clearer sky are very interesting.

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