Just one incredible canvas of the approximately 47 works recently bequeathed to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art by collector A. Jerrold Perenchio is this incredible painting dating to 1935 by Belgian Surrealist artist, René Magritte.
Fundamental to the work of the Belgian Surrealist René Magritte is his play with pictorial reality, which is presented best in his most recognized image, La Trahison des images (Ceci n’est pas une pipe) (1929), already in LACMA’s collection. Joining it is another iconic example of Magritte’s illusionistic games, Les Liaisons dangereuses, from 1935.
During the 1930s Magritte established his highly finished stylistic approach, secured his role as a leading Surrealist, and mastered the deadpan realism that made him a forerunner to Pop art. In this image of a nude woman, the ingenious visual arrangement simultaneously prevents and promotes sexual enticement. The incongruity of the flawless figure, however fastidiously rendered, reminds us of the construct of painting. This back and forth, found literally in the figure’s position and metaphorically in the real and imaginary nature of the image, lies at the heart of Magritte’s painting.
The addition of this work along with Stimulation Objective no. 3 (1939), where the rock, lion, and barrel, imposed with miniature versions of themselves in a beautifully painted landscape two important paintings to the museum’s collection provides LACMA with the most significant grouping of the artist’s work on the West Coast.
Text courtesy of LACMA Unframed