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Flashbacks on Film: Dali Atomicus

In this new weekly series, we’ll be bringing you some film photos from the past that deserve some recognition. This week, the focus is on Dali Atomicus.

Photo via Vintage Printable

Dali Atomicus is a Salvadore Dali photograph taken in 1948 by portrait photographer Philippe Halsman. Salvador Dali and Philippe Halsman met in 1941 and went on to collaborate on several projects. In 1948, they worked together on Dali Atomicus, Halsman’s tribute to the atomic age and to one of Dali’s works entitled Leda Atomica. At that time, it was recently announced by a physicist that matter hangs from a constant state of suspension. That statement became the focus of this photograph.

Philippe Halsman is known for taking portraits of personalities while they are in mid-jump. This was also the case for the Dali Atomicus. Several ideas were thought out before the final decision for the concept of the photo was made.

To achieve this shot, Dali had to jump 28 times. They worked for a total of 6 hours, and the assistants during the shoot had to throw buckets of water, and cats across the room to achieve the perfect exposure for the photograph. Below are some outtakes from the photo shoot.

Sources for this article include Wikipedia: Philippe Halsman, Behind the Photo and Neatorama.

Which photos would you like to get featured on Flashbacks on Film? Let us know by leaving a comment below!

written by jeanmendoza


  1. ihave2pillows


    poor cats lol

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  2. paoletta555


    ..and poor water!! :))
    over 2 years ago · report as spam
  3. jeffr


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  4. hervinsyah



    over 2 years ago · report as spam

Read this article in another language

This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Deutsch & Italiano.