Rock N Roll
is one of a series of seven that Dali painted in 1956. The paintings were for his friend Billy Rose, to replace a 1944 series Dali had painted for him called The Seven Lively Arts
which were destroyed in a fire at Billy's home. Rock N Roll
is a visual interpretation of rock and roll. In the previous series, this picture had been called Boogie-Woogie after the
current dance and music scene of that name.
1956 was the year in which Dali launched his own perfume, which was also called Rock "n" Roll. Dali explained the allure of Rock "n" Roll saying "I love anything that is dionysic, violent
and aphrodisiac." In Rock N Roll
he has represented all three of these qualities. The naked figures are deformed, with their bodies twisted out of shape through the energy of their
dance. They are pulling each other apart; the hand of the man is squeezing the neck of the woman, another hand (he has three) stretches her arm. The picture is a further exploration of
the sexual cannibalism theme portrayed in Autumnal Cannibalism
(1936); the idea of love being devouring.