Salvador Dalí’s striking 1937 diptych, entitled Couple aux têtes pleines de nuages, is expected to sell for up to $13 million at auction this spring. The towering Surrealist’s diptych, depicting himself and his wife Gala with their “heads full of clouds,” will be part of Bonhams’ Impressionist and Modern Art sale in London this March.
The panels feature a desert landscape filled with the artist’s reoccurring surrealist motifs — scattered rocks, a disfigured tree, a giraffe on fire and indistinct human figures. Created at the height of his Surrealist period, the diptych showcases Dalí’s interest in exploring Freudian psychologies and the unconscious mind.
Like many of his significant works, the painting is signed Gala Salvador Dalí to honor his wife.
For more than half a century, the painting hung in the living room of Italian composer Giacinto Scelsi. A prominent figure in Surrealist circles in the ’20s, the composer spent time with Dalí and his wife during their travels in Italy. Following Scelsi’s death in 1988, the work went on long-term loan to the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art of Trento and Rovereto. Now it will cross the block for the very first time and without guarantee.