Publishing and Printing of the Biblia Sacra

The Biblia Sacra illustrations were combined with text in the Latin Vulgate language and bound into five-volume sets covered in richly tooled leather. The text was taken from the version of the Bible used for liturgical services of the Roman Catholic Church. Dr. Giuseppe Albaretto, friend and patron of Dali, arranged to have the work published by Rizzoli Editions of Mediolani, Italy. Nearly 1800 sets of Biblia Sacra volumes were produced in three editions:

  • Ad Personam – 99 Bibles personalized for prominent individuals by subscription
  • Magni Luxus – 199 "Deluxe" Bibles
  • Luxus – 1499 Bibles
Additionally, there were some lithographs released by Rizzoli Editions as individual unbound images and as portfolios of six images without text.

Dali’s trust in Giuseppe Albaretto and Rizzoli Editions certainly seems justified. Bernard Ewell, in commenting on the Sacra Biblia series stated:

"Having examined the original paintings, as well as....the printed illustrations, I am tremendously impressed by the fidelity of the (Rizzoli Edition) prints. It is frequently difficult to tell they are not the original paintings. They are of quality that would fool most viewers. Truly, the coming together of the Albarettos, the Bible, and Dali resulted in a creation of a set of images that represent far more than the sum of the parts. Even so, it is worth stating again that each image quite clearly can stand alone as an individual work of art by Salvador Dali."

Mixed Technique Graphic Works

The Biblia Sacra works are a combination of offset lithography, continuous tone lithography, serigraphy (silkscreening) with application of varnishes and metallic inks. The works were “printed” on a heavy stock designed specifically to hold up to the various techniques used. Quality craftsmanship and artistry are evident in every Biblia Sacra work. The unique combination of multiple printing techniques gives these illustrations a richness and depth that resulted in works that are exceptionally true to the original paintings.