Art collector and publisher Pierre Argillet met the famed surrealist Salvador Dalí in 1934. Argillet was just starting as a publisher and was hoping to convince Dalí to allow one of his copper plate etchings to be used in a project. The two got along so well during that meeting that Dalí insisted Argillet take not only one, but two etchings. That began a friendship and professional partnership that would last more than 50 years and produce 200 suites of etchings. Both Argillet and Dalí are gone now, but Christine Argillet, the publisher's daughter and caretaker of his collection, is presenting the exhibition "Salvador Dalí: The Face of the Surrealist Movement," comprised of pieces from her family's holdings (the work is usually housed in the Dalí Museum in Spain and the Museum of Surrealism in France).
The show, the first major Dalí exhibit in Houston in more than a decade, includes paintings, etchings and rarely seen tapestries (the famous Argus Tapestry is among them). Argillet, who summered at the Dalí home as a young girl, says the work the two men produced remains as provocative and profound as ever. She'll be present at the show's opening, discussing the work and her personal recollections of her father and the artist (including a story that Dalí once started an etching of Medusa by throwing a dead, acid-dipped octopus onto a copper plate). Opening reception is 6 to 8 p.m. January 22. Regular viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, noon to 6 p.m. Sundays. Through January 31. Off the Wall Gallery, 5015 Westheimer. For information, call 713-871-0940 or visit www.offthewallgallery.com. Free.
Jan. 22-31, 2010