Body of Surrealist Painter Dali Exhumed for Paternity Test

Image Salvador Dali's tombstone

The DNA samples in the form of bone or tooth fragments will be sent to Madrid to undergo the necessary tests.

The woman, who claims to be a tarot card reader, says her mother met Dali in the 1950s in the village of Port Lligat in Catalonia's Girona province.

If her allegations turn out to be true, she would be the only daughter of the famous 20th-century painter, and that would give her a chance to claim a quarter of his huge fortune, estimated at almost 400 million euros ($460 million) at the end of 2016, according to the Salvador Dali Foundation.

The biological samples will travel to a forensic laboratory in Madrid for analysis, a process that could take weeks.

Revered for his eccentric works, such as the melting clocks in the 1931 painting "The Persistence of Memory", and instantly recognizable for his signature handlebar moustache, Dali died of heart failure in 1989 at the age of 84.

The exhumation for a posthumous paternity lasted some five hours, Europa Press news agency reported, and involved technicians and construction workers who set to work after the museum closed on Thursday evening.

The exhumation went ahead despite the objections of the local authorities and the foundation carrying DalĂ­'s name, both of which claimed that not enough notice had been given ahead of the exhumation.

"It's important for Salvador Dali to be returned to rest in the interior of his museum's dome", Penuelas said.




Ms Abel's court litigation started in 2015 when she sued the Ministry of Finance, as the trustee of Dali's estate, and the Gala Dali Foundation that was created to administer it.

"It is for this reason that we, the people of Figueras, we believe that it is very hard that he could have a child", said the AFPTV a resident of Figueras, Lidia, who claims to have known Dali at the age of 13 years.

For over a decade, Abel's family has tried to prove she is Dali's daughter. "But this is something that we will deal with when the time comes", he said. Married for 55 years to Elena Ivanova Diakonova, better known as Gala, it was assumed that the marriage was never consummated. "But a glance is worth a thousand words", she said.

Dali is the world's most renowned surrealist painter.

A question has always hung over his sexuality, with some claiming he was a closet homosexual who preferred to watch others having sex rather than taking part.

Spanish national Pilar Abel Martinez, 62, who claimed to Salvador Dali's daughter, in an interview in Barcelona on June 26, 2017.

Soon he left for Paris to join the surrealist movement, giving the school his own personal twist and rocketing to fame with works such as "The Great Masturbator". Years later, she confronted the mother by asking: "Is Dali really my father?"

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