Magnificent pairing of items signed by surrealist master Salvador Dali, including: a partial plaster cast for a right wrist injury, 3.5″ x 7.5″ x 1.25″, signed on the top in black felt tip, “Dali, 1975,” who adds a small sketch of a crown; and an attractively penned, untranslated ALS in French, signed upside down at the top of the sheet, “Dali, 1949,” one page, 7.25 x 10.5, Del Monte Lodge stationery, circa 1949, addressed to the original wearer of the included cast, Princess Helene Obolensky. In the letter Dali broaches the subject of mortality over the death of a mutual friend, a patron of the arts by the name of Mr. Bemberg who purchased many of the artist's paintings. Staying on the topic of mortality, Dali mentions another shared acquaintance in Argentinian First Lady Evita Peron, whose repeated fainting episodes had become a matter of concern. Dali runs out of writing room and proceeds to finish the letter counter-clockwise around the periphery of the sheet. In overall very good to fine condition, with expected wear to the cast, and short splits to ends of the intersecting folds of the letter.
In the 1930s Helene Obolensky married her husband, Prince Alexander Petrovich Obolensky, one of the last members of the Rurik family dynasty, and began working for French fashion designer Coco Chanel as her personal assistant. In this enviable post Obolensky was enabled to meet and befriend celebrities like Pablo Picasso, Evita Peron, Grace Kelly, and Salvador and Gala Dali, a couple with whom the Obolenskys would share many a dinner. The offered signed cast with sketch was on Obolensky’s arm when she and Dali had dined in 1975. Upon explaining to Dali that ‘It was just put on that morning,’ the artist leaned over and autographed the cast, evidently telling her, ‘I signed it large so nobody else will sign it.’ Aware of Dali’s growing fame, Helene kept the cast clean until it was removed from her arm the following month. She stored it in a shoe box and set it on a shelf in her bedroom closet where it would remain for the next 40 years.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.