Magritte and Photography from March 15th to June 11th 2006 at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie

This exhibition is part of “L’esprit du Nord/Spirit of the North” exhibition.


“La coquetterie”

This exhibition presents some 250 original prints that belonged to Magritte, many of them small-format, most seen here for the first time. They tell the story of his life: his family, his formative years, the time he met Georgette who was to become his inseparable companion and his favourite model; vacations on the Belgian coast, trips to his native Hainaut, his friends (including Scutenaire, Nougé, Mesens, Colinet, Lecomte, Irène Hamoir) who playfully recall the fact that Belgian Surrealism is first and foremost a group movement; his move to Paris in 1928 and the “attempt at the impossible”; then the return to Brussels and the intense period of artistic creation that followed, the photos from the 1930s up to 1955 where Magritte developed a peculiar sense of insolence quite distinct from what we see in his paintings, and equally separate from French Surrealism.

Time went by and international success arrived at last. Magritte became a character from his paintings. In a dark suit and a bowler hat, he played at being himself for Belgian and other photographers. He came out of his paintings alive and embodied an immediately recognisable character, long before Warhol, Beuys or Gilbert & George.

Exhibition jointly produced with the René Magritte Foundation.

Maison Européenne de la photographie


“L’éminence grise”