Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Dalí Museum debuts film honoring some of its faithful supporters

ST. PETERSBURG — Jane Roberts first heard of Salvador Dalí in the middle of the last century. She had graduated from a small college in Pennsylvania with a degree in art and was teaching a class in New York City. Dalí, at the time, was an internationally known star of the art world, at least in part because of his antics and eccentricities.

"He was, always, as we know, craving notoriety," Roberts said. "I just thought, 'Ho hum, another nut.' "

She moved with her husband and children to South Florida in the mid 1950s and to St. Petersburg nearly 20 years after that. And not until her itch for the arts led her to call the Salvador Dalí Museum staff, asking if they needed a volunteer, did her perspective of him change.

On Saturday, the museum presented a documentary that tells the stories of six of its most faithful supporters. Museum staff teamed with Suncoast Hospice and the TASCO Center for Teen Technology to interview the subjects, including Roberts, and produce the film.

For a few brief moments before the debut, Roberts sat on the museum's first floor and reminisced about her relationship with the organization over the past 30 years. A wrapped red rose, which matched her lipstick, lay on the table in front of her. She wore black pants and a multicolored blouse and around her neck hung a necklace with a dollar-sized medallion that depicts Dalí's famous melting clocks. The piece of jewelry signified her membership in the Order of Salvador, a group that recognizes supporters.

Her involvement with the museum began in the gift shop, but she spent most of her years in the library, where she researched the archives. She has also given tours since the early 1980s and was named volunteer of the year in 1992.

Roberts eventually learned to appreciate the nuance in Dalí's paintings. She understood their deeper meanings and saw the artist as something much more than a provocateur.

And her favorite painting?

"The one with the funny, unpronounceable name," she said. Its title, Galacidalacidesoxyribonucleicacid, is easier to type. Roberts likes the science that influenced its creation.

Her inclusion in the documentary, she said, was special.

"Digging up memories," she said. "That was really fun."

As a woman approached the table to escort her to the film's debut, Roberts declined to reveal her age. She never does.

"I don't want to be a number," she said. "I'm convinced that once you get old, all people want to talk about is how old you are."

She paused.

"I can tell you," she continued, "that this museum keeps you young."

Dalí Museum debuts film honoring some of its faithful supporters 08/17/13 [Last modified: Saturday, August 17, 2013 8:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Astros rout Yankees to force Game 7 of AL Championship Series


    HOUSTON — Justin Verlander pitched seven shutout innings to outduel Luis Severino for the second time, and the Astros bats came alive in their return home as Houston routed the Yankees 7-1 Friday night and forced a decisive Game 7 in the American League Championship Series.

    The Astros’ Brian McCann, who has struggled during the ALCS, breaks a scoreless tie with an RBI double during the fifth inning off Yankees starter Luis Severino.
  2. Review: Faith Hill and Tim McGraw shower love, star power on Tampa's Amalie Arena


    Near the end of their potent new duet Break First, Tim McGraw stopped singing, and let Faith Hill's powerhouse voice take over.

    Faith Hill and Tim McGraw performed at Amalie Arena in Tampa on Oct. 20, 2017.
  3. Senate to take up AUMF debate as Trump defends reaction to Niger attack


    WASHINGTON — The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is taking up a long-awaited debate about authorizing military force against the Islamic State as President Trump comes under unprecedented public scrutiny for his treatment of dead soldiers' families, following an ambush on troops helping to fight Islamic …

  4. In fear and vigilance, a Tampa neighborhood holds its breath


    TAMPA — There was a time, not long ago, when Wayne Capaz would go for a stroll at night and Christina Rodriguez would shop whenever she wanted. Michael Fuller would go to his night job as a line cook, not too worried about his wife at home.

    More than 50 people gathered and walked in the Southeast Seminole Heights community Friday to pay respects to the victims of three shootings. The crowd took a moment of silence at the corner of 11th Street and East New Orleans where Monica Hoffa was found dead. [JONATHAN CAPRIEL  |  Times]
  5. Fennelly: What's not to like about Lightning's start?

    Lightning Strikes

    BRANDON — No one is engraving the Stanley Cup. No one has begun stuffing the league MVP ballot box for Nikita Kucherov.

    The Lightning, with a win tonight, would match the best start in franchise history, 7-1-1 in the 2003-04 Cup season.