Cybernetic Lobster Telephone


Salvador Dalí ( Spanish, 1904 - 1989 )

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General Description

"This is an aesthetic variation on the telephone. It will contain organic or radioactive substances in telephonic form. Televised pictures of what we are saying will appear on the dial. We will not have to speak into this phone. We have only to think to transmit. We can transmit not only ideas and words, but emotions. The lobster is used here in a symbolic way. The lobster is an organic substance with many feelers." What if humans could mechanically transmit ideas and emotions? Using one of his famous themes from the past, Dalí imagines his Lobster Telephone of 1936 as an instrument of the future. The bulging clawed lobster on the telephone handset dissuades one from using the telephone manually. Instead the machine encourages us to "transmit" our conversations mentally, which, according to Dalí, is a sign of greater sophistication.