Salvador Dali had no 'secret daughter' like Spanish woman claimed, DNA test reveals

Published 06.09.2017 18:52
Updated 06.09.2017 21:37
The DNA tests show that Pilar Abel is not Dali's daughter. (FILE Photo)
The DNA tests show that Pilar Abel is not Dali's daughter. (FILE Photo)

A DNA test done on the remains of Salvador Dali show he is not the father of a Spanish psychic claiming to be his illegitimate daughter who asked for his exhumation, the Dali Foundation said Wednesday.

"The DNA tests show that Pilar Abel is not Dali's daughter," the foundation said in a statement.

The foundation said Wednesday that the Madrid court that ordered the DNA test informed it that Pilar Abel, a 61-year-old tarot card reader, has no biological relationship with Dali.

Abel has long alleged her mother had an affair with Dali and claimed she had the right to part of his vast estate. The foundation said it was happy the "absurd" claim had been resolved.

A court spokesman told The Associated Press the court has not made the test results public but has informed the parties in the lawsuit. He spoke on condition of anonymity in accordance with court rules.

Calls to the lawyer of Pilar Abel rang unanswered.

The arduous task of the exhumation in July involved removing a slab weighing more than a tonne that covered his tomb at the Dali Theatre-Museum in Figueras in northeastern Spain where the eccentric artist was born.

Forensics experts then removed DNA samples from Dali's skin, nail and two long bones.

The Dali Foundation's lawyer, Alber Segura, has warned that Abel could be landed with a big bill if her claims are proven false.

"If Pilar Abel is not Dali's daughter then we must ask this woman to reimburse the costs of the exhumation," he said at the time of the exhumation.

Abel, a 61-year-old who long worked as a psychic in Catalonia, claims her mother had a relationship with the artist when she worked in Cadaques, a picturesque Spanish port where the painter lived for years.

A Madrid judge in June granted her a DNA test to find out whether her allegations are true.

If Abel had been confirmed as Dali's only child, she would have been entitled to 25 percent of the huge fortune and heritage of one of the most celebrated and prolific painters of the 20th century, according to her lawyer Enrique Blanquez.

Dali's estate, which includes properties and hundreds of paintings, is entirely in the hands of the Spanish state.

The Foundation says it was worth nearly 400 million euros ($460 million) at the end of 2016.

In an interview with AFP just days after a court ordered the exhumation, Abel said her grandmother had told her she was Dali's daughter when she was seven or eight years old. Her mother admitted it much later.

Abel is from the city of Figueras, like Dali, and she said she would often see him in the streets.

"We wouldn't say anything, we would just look at each other. But a glance is worth a thousand words," she said.

Dali, who died in 1989 aged 84, was one of the 20th century's most famous and easily recognised artists. His paintings include "The Persistence of Memory", with its iconic images of melting clocks, and he also turned his hand to movies, sculpture and advertising.

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