Original bronze sculpture - edition 350 + 35 E/A
Date: conceived in 1976, first cast in 1984
Height: 51 cm
Technique: lost wax process
Edition size: 350 + 35 EA
Maquette: original gouache, ʺLady Godiva with Butterfliesʺ, 1976
Descharnes References: Dalí: The Hard and the Soft, Sculptures & Objects. Eccart, 2004. pg. 248 ref. 640
Lady Godiva was an English noblewoman from the eleventh century, who, according to legend, rode naked through the streets of Coventry on horseback, to oppose taxation laws of the time, imposed by her husband the Earl of Mercia, becoming a feminine legend.
In this sublime sculpture, Dalí adds a surreal touch, adorning Lady Godiva’s body with four fluttering butterflies, symbols often used in his artwork. Symbols of the soul and of change, butterflies insinuate rebirth, infinite transformations, metamorphosis, and natural beauty.
Lady Godiva’s ride has inspired many artists, Dalí in particular used this image from 1976 both in bronze and in various etchings.
The Dalínian Lady Godiva with Butterflies does not hide beneath her abundant hair, but proudly announces her femininity. Her whole figure seems to radiate light and luminescence, the trumpet a symbol of victory pointing to the heavens and the future.