René Magritte, fifty years on

Magritte-Nov-22Roderick Conway Morris at the TLS:

René Magritte, surely the most humane and witty of all Surrealist artists, died at the age of sixty-eight, half a century ago this year. He enjoyed international recognition and financial security only during the last fifteen years of his life, and his reputation has continued to grow abroad. He is now seen as perhaps the greatest Belgian artist of the twentieth century.

In 2009, the Royal Museum of Fine Arts of Belgium, which owns the largest single collection of his works, opened the five-floor Magritte Museum within its own walls in his home town, Brussels. This institutional act of homage had been anticipated by a local devotee of the artist, André Garitte, who – against considerable odds and official indifference – managed in 1992 to buy the apartment where Magritte and his wife Georgette lived during the key years 1930–54. He turned it into the René Magritte Museum, which, after much voluntary work by enthusiasts, opened its doors in 1999.

Any past sins of omission are currently being further expiated with various events marking the fiftieth anniversary of Magritte’s death.

more here.