Born in Lessines, Belgium, René Magritte began his journey as an artist under the influence of the Cubism and Futurism movements.

Very impressed by the metaphysical paintings of Chirico, Magritte would quickly move on to surrealism, becoming the most remarkable representative of this school of art. Magritte painted dressed in a business suit in a corner of his living room, without making the slightest mess. The artist, who lived a rather bourgeois existence, had a dramatic fall out with Breton, the Pope of Surrealism. It would seem that Breton wanted Magritte’s wife to take off a cross she wore around her neck… The artist always chose familiar objects to paint: an apple, a pipe, a tree or a human body. He would then wield extraordinary changes by altering the object’s size. Surrealism, as we all know, is a mixture of very different painters. Magritte’s surrealistic style stood out thanks to the totally unexpected relationships he created among real objects. Such elements, paradoxically, are present in all of his works and shatter our perception of them. The artist chose the titles of his pieces with great care, further accentuating the surprise effect and the mystery surrounding his work, as the titles usually were completely out of step with what was provided on canvas. The familiar and the unfamiliar are integral parts of any Magritte piece, and the ensemble of his work is always pleasant to look at.

Magritte also gave us some beautiful wall decorations like those adorning the Palais des Beaux Arts in Charleroi, Belgium. He contributed his own illustrations to the Chants de Maldoror by Lautréamont and the Nécessités by Paul Eluard. Magritte is one of Surrealism’s world heavy weight champions.

Available artworks

Rene Magritte, Joconde