New DNA test results have refuted claims by a Spanish woman that surrealist artist Salvador Dali was her biological father.
According to a statement released by the Dali Foundation Wednesday, a court-ordered test on the exhumed body of the famous artist “exclude Salvador Dali as the biological father of Maria Pilar Abel Martinez.”
A Spanish court had ordered Dali to be exhumed in July 2017 at Martinez’s request, a ruling which was highly controversial at the time.
A large stone slab had to be removed so forensic scientists could access the embalmed body and take samples of DNA from Dali’s hair and teeth.
In their statement on Wednesday, the Dali Foundation said they were unsurprised by the discovery. “There was no indication from the very beginning that this paternity claim had any veracity,” it said.
But Martínez’s lawyer, Enrique Blanqes, said he would not comment until he has read the forensic report.
One of history’s greatest surrealist artists, Dali was known for his pencil-thin mustache, eclectic persona and bizarre painted works. He died in 1989 at the age of 84.
He had never given any indication he had fathered any children, once saying, “Great geniuses produce mediocre children, and I don’t want to go through that experience.”
Decade-old quest finished?
The 61-year-old Martinez said her mother, a maid at one of Dali’s homes in Port Lligat, had maintained a clandestine relationship with the artist.
She has been attempting to prove Dali is her father for more than a decade.
Martinez previously attempted to get a paternity result from Dali’s old belongings in 2007 but the results proved inconclusive, leading the Madrid Supreme Court to agree there were no other reliable remains.
At the time, the Dali Foundation objected saying there was “no evidence” of the claim.
“The only grounds provided constitute a notarial statement from a woman who claims to be a friend of the mother, stating that the latter told her that her daughter’s father was Salvador Dali,” the Foundation said in a statement.