FIGUERES, Spain – Salvador Dalí’s eccentric artistic and personal biography is taking yet another bizarre turn with the exhumation of his embalmed remains in order to find genetic samples that could settle whether one of the founding figures of surrealism fathered a girl.
Pilar Abel, a 61-year-old tarot card reader, claims that her mother had an affair with Dalí while working as a domestic helper in the northeastern Spanish town of Figueres, where the artist was born and had moved back to with his Russian wife Gala.
After two decades of court battles, a Madrid judge last month granted Abel a DNA test to find out whether her allegations are true. The exhumation begins Thursday night.
Abel says a desire to honor her mother’s memory, and not money, were motivating her paternity lawsuit.