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René Magritte

René Magritte

(1898 - 1967)
Born: Lessines, Belgium
Style: Surrealism
Famous Works:
  • The Lovers (1928)
  • The Treachery of Images (1928-29)
  • The Son of Man (1964)
Though René Magritte studied art from a young age, he did not find his way artistically for some time. Magritte's mother committed suicide when he was only thirteen, an event that had a tremendous impact; it has been asserted that this experience would forever shape his work. Early in his career, Magritte dabbled in Impressionism and Futurism and studied in Brussels at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts. The artist's first exhibition opened in 1927 and was the subject of tremendous criticism. Magritte was so upset by the response that he packed up and left Brussels. Magritte lived and worked in Paris until 1930, where he met André Breton and became involved with the Surrealists. His signature style was formed in this time, with his almost invisible brushwork, and compositions of seemingly unrelated objects. Often one element morphed into another, as the sky became a wall, or shoes became feet. This playful style revealed his interest in undermining reality, calling the viewer's preconceptions into question. One of Magritte's most famous paintings is The Treachery of Images, which attacked the acceptance of characterization and imagery. In the work, an image of a pipe is accompanied by the words, "Ceci n'est pas une pipe", in English, "This is not a pipe." Magritte's trademark was a constant questioning of principles and beliefs, and an unwillingness to live within conventional artistic boundaries. He was included in several Surrealist exhibitions and his success became permanent in the second half of his career, when he received numerous commissions and awards. The graphic quality of his work has influenced many Pop artists, and is beloved today by a large audience.
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Great for illustrations!!!
- Dave Y. in Houston, TX
I really like these pencils. I accidentally found a technique that really exemplified the "magic" in them. Rolling the pencil to preserve the point and coloring in a circular motion really brings out the random beauty of the colors in coloring a small petaled flower like a zinnia. I have colored an entire picture with one pencil and gotten raves about it. The biggest drawback I am experiencing is the lack of tutorials to help people understand how to use them. I have seen critiques where the artist did not have a clue how to use them. I have also seen a Russian tutorial that shows a lot of blending techniques that really show some extraordinary effects. I am currently exploring their use for backgrounds. I like the pencils and find them a challenge to explore the "magic."
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I have tried many different mold "puttys" and this one is the best so far. It is easy to mix and holds little details really well. The set time is quick and no mess.
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