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The First ''Consideration''
When Dalí says he met Picasso
Dalí tells us in his Secret Life that he went to visit Picasso: this is important, because it tells us that the young Dalí felt he could not grow as an artist until he had brought his work and his ambitions into line with those of Picasso and Miró. The received wisdom at the San Fernando Academy in Madrid, where Dalí enrolled in 1922 at the age of 18, was that "modern" meant "Impressionist", while Dalí, in his clash with the institution, decided to question this alleged modernity and to champion its opposite, namely classicism. It was thus that Dalí began, in 1924, to explore his affinity with the new form of classicism on which Picasso had embarked in 1914. Dalí's adoption of classicism in 1925, however, reached a turning point when he began to espouse the rigid geometrical structuring of masses: the basis of what Dalí was to call "Neocubism", but what we might also call "neo-classicism". He wanted to be recognised as a classical artist in 1924, but he had changed his mind by 1926. The definition "Neocubism" reveals the complex symbolic, iconographical and psychological concepts, strongly influenced by his reading of Freud, that underlie Dalí's work.