Salvador Dali painting Amanda Lear by Yul Brynner, Spain, 1971
Salvador Dali painting Amanda Lear in Spain, 1971. Photo by Yul Brynner.
“Dalí was a genius who liked ambiguity and he used to talk to women as they were men”, said Lear, a model-turned-pop singer, painter and actress, whom it was once rumoured had a sex-change paid for by Dalí, though she has always denied that she was born a boy.
Lear became Dalí’s constant companion, muse and disciple, and accompanied Dalí and Gala on their trips to Barcelona, Madrid, New York and Paris over a period of fifteen years. Lear posed for some of Dalí’s works such as Venus in Fur and Vogué, took part in several of his film projects and was seen by his side during press conferences.
Lear’s origins are unclear: contested facts include her birthdate, her birth sex, the names and nationalities of her parents and the location of her upbringing. Lear’s alleged transsexual background has been commented upon in the media and in the biographies of those who knew Lear earlier in her life.