Salvador Dali to be exhumed July 20th for paternity test

A Spanish judge has scheduled the exhumation of the remains of Salvador Dalí on July 20th, the artist's foundation and a court said Thursday, although this date may change if an appeal is accepted.

Salvador Dali to be exhumed July 20th for paternity test
Pilar Abel believes she is the daughter of the artist.

The remains of the world-famous surrealist, who is buried in his museum in Figueras, in northeastern Spain, were ordered exhumed after a woman who claims to be his daughter filed a paternity claim.

Pilar Abel, a 61-year-old who long worked as a psychic in Catalonia, says her mother had a relationship with the artist when she worked in Port Lligat, a tiny fishing hamlet where the painter lived for years.   

A spokeswoman for the Salvador Dalí Foundation, which manages the artist's estate and has lodged an appeal against the exhumation, told AFP they had been notified by a judge that it would take place on Thursday, July 20th.

READ MORE: Did Dalí father a secret love child?

A spokesman for Madrid's high court, which oversees other courts in the area including the one that ordered the exhumation, added it was scheduled for 9.30 am local time (0730 GMT).

Experts will take DNA samples directly from the grave where Dalí was buried after his death in 1989, which will then be sent to Madrid to undergo the necessary tests.

But the foundation hopes to avoid it if its appeal is successful.

On Tuesday, medical experts extracted saliva from Abel to obtain her own DNA and cross-check it against that of Dalí.   

In an interview with AFP last month, just days after a court ordered the exhumation, she said her grandmother first told her she was Dalí's daughter when she was seven or eight years old, and her mother admitted it much later.   

Abel is from the city of Figueras, like Dalí, 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.   

Notoriously eccentric, Dalí's life was marked as much by the genius of his work as by his own extravagances.   

A question has always hung over his sexuality, with some claiming he was a closet homosexual who preferred to watch others having sex rather than taking part.

But according to Abel's lawyer Enrique Blanquez, his affair was “known in the village, there are people who have testified before a notary”.

READ ALSO: DNA test confirms Julio Iglesias fathered secret son


He’s the daddy: Court rules that Julio Iglesias fathered secret son

A Spanish court ruled Wednesday that Grammy award-winning singer Julio Iglesias is the biological father of a 43-year-old man.

He's the daddy: Court rules that Julio Iglesias fathered secret son
Julio Iglesias pictured in Mexico in September 2015. Photo: AFP

The case was brought by Javier Sanchez Santos, the son of Portuguese former ballerina Maria Edite who says she had a brief affair with Iglesias in 1975.


Javier Sanchez Santos (C), arrives with his mother Maria Edite Santos at the court in Valencia on July 4th Photo: AFP

His lawyer Fernando Osuna said Edite met Iglesias in Catalonia in Spain's northeast, that “they were together a week, in July 1975” and that “nine months later Javier was born.”

An earlier paternity case brought against Iglesias was dismissed for lack of evidence but the latest one was filed after detectives working for Sanchez presented new DNA evidence.

A detective managed to get close to the singer's son Julio Iglesias Junior while he was surfing in Miami and picked up “a bottle of water” that was used in a DNA test, the lawyer said.

The test showed that Julio Iglesias Jr and Sanchez are brothers, he added.   

The singer has always refused to do a DNA test.   

Known for his romantic ballads and a prolific love life that has long been fodder for tabloid headlines, Iglesias has sold over 300 million albums in his decades-long career. 

He has been married twice, to Spanish socialite Isabel Preysler with whom he had three children, and to Miranda Rijnsburger, his current wife with whom he has five others.

He has often presented himself as an unapologetic flirt with “an obsession for sex.”

“Don't ask me how many brothers I have, I don't even know myself,” his son Julio Jr said in 2018 on television.