René Magritte (1898-1967) was one of the most intriguing painters associated with Surrealism, but he did not fully find his voice until after breaking ties with the movement. This book, the first to look exclusively at Magritte’s late career, examines his most important bodies of work from the 1940s through the 1960s, and shows how they marked a fundamental shift in painting from Modernism to our own time.
Featuring more than sixty artworks, René Magritte: The Fifth Season explores how Magritte balanced irony and conviction, philosophy and fantasy, to illuminate the gaps between what we see and what we know. Subjects explored in this volume include the artist’s Renoir period; the période vache, with its Fauvist- and Expressionist-style paintings that are little known to American audiences; the ‘hypertrophy of objects’ paintings, a series that plays with the scale of familiar objects; and the enigmatic Dominion of Light suite, paintings that suggest the simultaneous experience of day and night. Together, the works reveal Magritte as an artist acutely attuned to the paradoxes at work within reality, and an enduring champion of the role of mystery in life and art.