Friday, January 21, 2011

Les Diners de Gala (Draeger, 1973)

Les Diners de Gala
(Draeger, 1973)

Although typically attributed to Dali, the book does not actually state that Dali "authored" the book.  None of the recipes or the text is attributed to Dali, and Dali is referred to in the third person throughout the book.  However, it is very clear that the illustrations for this book are mainly by Dali.  There are some illustrations not by Dali, and certainly the photos of the recipe dishes were not photographed by Dali.

Nevertheless, this book is a nice prize for any Dali collection.  It is a work of art from cover to cover. 

The reflective gold dust jacket grabs one's attention immediately.  Inside, one finds the book replete with illustrations both unique to this book and recycled from past Dali works.
Concerning the recycled Dali illustrations, the majority come from Les Chants de Maldoror (1934) and Gargantua and Pantagruel (1973).  I especially like the latter because they are bizarre, fantastical, and rarely seen elsewhere.

The works specifically created for this book are also quite bizarre and fantastical in their own right, but with the focus specifically on cooking and food.  Certainly a unique set of illustrations--very colorful, very strange.

I don't know what else to say about this book except that it is a psychedelic art and food adventure.  Flip through it an you might agree.

The book is fairly common, so one can almost always find one for sale online.  However, the book is in relatively high demand, so a nice copy complete with dust jacket can easily sell for $100-$150 and more.

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