It is about a Russian woman who became a muse and a lover of many talented people and after 1929 became known to the world as Gala Dali.
I continued to research her biography. First of all, I wanted to know how Elena Ivanovna Diakonova became Gala. I found from RUSSIA: PAST AND PRESENT
that her first husband poet Paul Eluard was inspired by her “ardour, decisiveness, resoluteness, and high culture”. “He nicknamed her Gala from the French word meaning “triumph, festival”.
Now, in 1929 Eluard, Gala and their 11 years old daughter Cecile visited a Catalonian artist Salvador Dali at his place in Cadaqués. Some sources say that Gala and Salvador, who was 10 years younger, fell passionately in love with each other, that she was his lover, his muse, his only female model.
Let’s consider some facts.
In 1929 Salvador Dali was 25 years old. In DALI”S DEMON BRIDE
John Richardson wrote: “Dali was …a virgin when they met, who feared female private parts, and in a very close relationship with the poet Federico Garcia Lorca”. The artist had already heard about Gala’s activities, “…but his first sight of her in a bathing suit, on the sacrosanct beach of his childhood, left him bewitched. Gala was the demonic dominatrix of his dreams.”
On the other hand, Gala was 35 years old, married and had affairs with many men. Richardson writes: “… she was in the market for another celebrity husband. And in the 25-year-old Dali she found … someone who shared her passion for money, power, and notoriety, but also someone whose latest paintings, with their references to Freud and Sade and their meticulous, Vermeer-like finish, were destined to have an instant succes de scandale.”
Gala divorced Paul Eluard and from 1929 was always with Salvador. In 1934 they married in a civil ceremony. In 1958 they remarried in a Catholic ceremony.
SALVADOR & GALA IN 1930. Courtesy of Dali museum.
From Wikipedia: “She was Dalí’s muse, directly inspiring and appearing in many of his works.
In the early 1930s, Dalí started to sign his paintings with his and her name as “(i)t is mostly with your blood, Gala, that I paint my pictures”. He stated that Gala acted as his agent, and aided in redirecting his focus. …
Gala had a strong sex drive and throughout her life had numerous extramarital affairs (among them with her former husband Paul Eluard), which Dali encouraged, since he was a practitioner of candaulism. She had a fondness for young artists, and in her old age she often gave expensive gifts to those who associated with her.
In 1968, Dalí bought Gala her own separate castle in Púbol, Girona, where she would spend time every summer from 1971-1980. He also agreed not to visit there without getting advance permission from her in writing.
In her late seventies, Gala had a relationship and bond with millionaire multi-platinum rock singer Jeff Fenholt… Fenholt acted as a business representative for the Dalis in America.”
Gala died in Port Lligat in 1982, aged 87.
Many sources stress that Gala was Salvador’s business manager and advertiser. She told him what to do and managed to get a lot of money that both liked very much.