(after) René Magritte - La Joconde - Surrealist Bronze Sculpture Dimensions: 83x56x33 cm (32.7'x22'x13' in) Edition: 250 + 20AP. Posthumous cast. Patinated Bronze Patinated bronze sculpture of René Magritte, casted in France using the lost-wax method and produced after the 1967 original sculpture Magritte designed after his 1960 own painting of the same name. The sculpture is numbered and bears Magritte’s signature and the foundry mark. It bears the mark of Succession René Magritte, and also the thumb imprint of Charly Herscovici, President of the Magritte Foundation and representing the Magritte Succession. About The Work In January 1967, seven months before his death, Magritte decided to produce sculptures based on his most emblematic paintings. He translated 8 of his works into large scale sculptures in 3 dimensions enabling him to express the true nature of his work with strange and incongruous objects and patterns. According to his merchant Iolas, Magritte had thought of painting a sky ''à la Magritte'' on the biggest of curtains, the same way he had done in his paintings. One of the two preparatory drawings of the sculptures was reproduced in Iolas’ catalogue and depicted a pencil drawing of the latter curtains. The artist’s proof of this sculpture was sent in 1968 to Georgette Magritte, the artist’s widow and was sold to London’s Sotheby’s during the dispersion of Magritte’s workshop. The sculpture is based on La Joconde painting, 1960, composed of three independent curtains, one of which Magritte’s works’ inherent sky and clouds was painted upon, and a ringbell also found in many of Magritte’s artworks. Magritte used this curtain motif in numerous paintings and drawings during the last decade of his life (L’Image en soi, 1961, a similar composition painted for André Breton, Le Beau Monde, 1962, La Peine perdue, 1962, commissioned by harry torczyner). The title was found by Suzi Gablick, an American historian of art that lived with the Magritte during the time of her work on the artist in that period. The painting therefore unites certain elements that are most reoccurring in Magritte’s iconography (the sky, the sphere, the curtains), all represented on a neutral background unlike the other series of “curtains”. The composition is dominated by these monumental curtains with which Magritte juxtaposes opposites (the paradox of hiding or revealing, the contrast between nature and human creations, the interiors and exteriors), and by confronting these elements Magritte evokes the essential surrealist paradigm. This paradigm consists of questioning ourselves on the purpose and significance that we attribute to different objects and to reveal new significances by placing these objects in different contexts. the central curtain with its harsh edges can evoke certain collages of cut paper produced during the 20s and Magritte had the following explanation regarding the mixture of the sky and the curtain: “the sky takes the shape of a curtain because it is hiding something... we are surrounded by curtains”. Therefore, we can see through these curtains the deceptive nature of the painted object compared to what it really represents, thus explaining the “staging” of the curtains similar to a theatre stage.