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New United States exhibit to show Belgian painter Rene Magritte's surreal turn
René Magritte (Belgian, 1898–1967). Les amants (The Lovers). 1928. Oil on canvas. 21 3/8 x 28 7/8″ (54 x 73.4 cm). Museum of Modern Art. Gift of Richard S. Zeisler. © Charly Herscovici -– ADAGP – ARS, 2013.
NEW YORK (AFP).- A new exhibition focused on Belgian painter Rene Magritte's embrace of surrealism will visit museums in Chicago, Houston and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, organizers said Tuesday.

"Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary, 1926-1938" groups some 80 paintings, collages, photographs and objects, and will be at the MoMA from September 28 through January 12 before moving on to the Menil Collection in Houston and the Art Institute of Chicago.

"This will be the first show in a museum devoted to the work of Magritte to be held in New York City in over 20 years, a generation," Anne Umland, the organizer of the MoMA exhibition, told reporters.

After starting out as an impressionist and trying his hand at cubism, Magritte (1898-1967) started edging closer to surrealism in 1926 while still living in Brussels.

The following year he moved to Paris and from then on committed completely to the surreal style of painting, creating fantastical landscapes and portraits incorporating bowler hats, apples and pipes.

Josef Helfenstein, director of the Menil Collection, noted that while "Magritte stayed for less than three years in Paris, ... it was the most productive period in his life. He produced over 200 paintings."

The exhibit includes some of his best-known works, such as "La trahison des images (The Treachery of Images), "Les amants," (The Lovers) "Le faux miroir" (The False Mirror) and "L'assasin menacé," (The Menaced Assassin) giving an appreciation of "Magritte's unique genius," Umland said.

"Many of the key strategies that we will see Magritte developing -- framing, doubling, repetition for defamiliarizing the familiar and for making the ordinary and the everyday deeply strange."



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