Pilar Abel Martínez.

DNA Test Refutes Allegations in Lawsuit Filed by Woman Claiming to be Salvador Dalí’s Daughter

On Wednesday, September 6, the Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation announced that a paternity test proved that a Spanish woman, who claimed to be the Surrealist artist’s illegitimate daughter, has no biological relation to Dalí.

Pilar Abel Martínez, a sixty-one year-old tarot card reader, filed a lawsuit against the foundation and the Spanish state after she alleged that her mother had an affair with the painter while working as a maid in Port Lligat, Spain, the fishing village where Dalí and his wife Gala lived, and that part of his estate was rightfully hers.

In June, a judge in Madrid ordered the exhumation of the artist’s body, which was successfully carried out on July 21. After biological samples were taken from his hair, nails, and bones, they were analyzed by the National Institute of Toxicology and Forensic Sciences, which declared that the results obtained “permits the exclusion of Salvador Dalí as the biological father of María Pilar Abel Martínez.”

In response to the results of the DNA test, the foundation issued the following statement: “The [Gala-Salvador Dalí Foundation] is pleased that this report puts an end to an absurd and artificial controversy, and that the figure of Salvador Dalí remains definitively excluded from totally groundless claims. The Dalí Foundation is also pleased to be able to focus again on the management of its extraordinary artistic legacy and in the promotion of the work and figure of Salvador Dalí.” The organization also notes that Abel’s claims resulted in unnecessary costs and damages.

The artist’s remains will soon be returned to his crypt, located below his theater and museum in Figueres, the Spanish town where he was born. Dalí died at the age of eighty-four in 1989, several years before his wife. They didn’t have any children.