Spring — Rene Magritte


Spring, 1965 by Rene Magritte

The Blow to the Heart — René Magritte

The Blow to the Heart, 1956 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

Prince Charming — René Magritte


Prince Charming, 1948 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

The Well of Truth — René Magritte


The Well of Truth, 1963 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

Secret Life IV — Rene Magritte


Secret Life IV, 1928 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

Almayer’s Folly — Rene Magritte


Almayer’s Folly, 1951 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

“Kaspar!  Makan!”

The well-known shrill voice startled Almayer from his dream of splendid future into the unpleasant realities of the present hour.  An unpleasant voice too.  He had heard it for many years, and with every year he liked it less.  No matter; there would be an end to all this soon.

He shuffled uneasily, but took no further notice of the call.  Leaning with both his elbows on the balustrade of the verandah, he went on looking fixedly at the great river that flowed—indifferent and hurried—before his eyes.  He liked to look at it about the time of sunset; perhaps because at that time the sinking sun would spread a glowing gold tinge on the waters of the Pantai, and Almayer’s thoughts were often busy with gold; gold he had failed to secure; gold the others had secured—dishonestly, of course—or gold he meant to secure yet, through his own honest exertions, for himself and Nina.  He absorbed himself in his dream of wealth and power away from this coast where he had dwelt for so many years, forgetting the bitterness of toil and strife in the vision of a great and splendid reward.  They would live in Europe, he and his daughter.  They would be rich and respected.  Nobody would think of her mixed blood in the presence of her great beauty and of his immense wealth.  Witnessing her triumphs he would grow young again, he would forget the twenty-five years of heart-breaking struggle on this coast where he felt like a prisoner.  All this was nearly within his reach.  Let only Dain return!  And return soon he must—in his own interest, for his own share.  He was now more than a week late!  Perhaps he would return to-night.  Such were Almayer’s thoughts as, standing on the verandah of his new but already decaying house—that last failure of his life—he looked on the broad river.  There was no tinge of gold on it this evening, for it had been swollen by the rains, and rolled an angry and muddy flood under his inattentive eyes, carrying small drift-wood and big dead logs, and whole uprooted trees with branches and foliage, amongst which the water swirled and roared angrily.

One of those drifting trees grounded on the shelving shore, just by the house, and Almayer, neglecting his dream, watched it with languid interest.  The tree swung slowly round, amid the hiss and foam of the water, and soon getting free of the obstruction began to move down stream again, rolling slowly over, raising upwards a long, denuded branch, like a hand lifted in mute appeal to heaven against the river’s brutal and unnecessary violence.  Almayer’s interest in the fate of that tree increased rapidly.  He leaned over to see if it would clear the low point below.  It did; then he drew back, thinking that now its course was free down to the sea, and he envied the lot of that inanimate thing now growing small and indistinct in the deepening darkness.  As he lost sight of it altogether he began to wonder how far out to sea it would drift.  Would the current carry it north or south?  South, probably, till it drifted in sight of Celebes, as far as Macassar, perhaps!

–The opening paragraphs of Joseph Conrad’s 1895 novel Almayer’s Folly.

The Revenge — René Magritte


The Revenge, 1939 by René Magritte (1898-1967)

The Present — Rene Magritte 

the present

The Present, 1939 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

The Listening Room — Rene Magritte


The Listening Room, 1952 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

The Thief — Rene Magritte


La voleuse (The Thief) 1927 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

Our Daily Bread — Rene Magritte

Le Pain Quotidien

Our Daily Bread, 1942 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

Spring — Rene Magritte


Spring, 1965 by Rene Magritte

The Lovers — Rene Magritte

imgThe Lovers, 1928 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

The Lovers — Rene Magritte


The Lovers, 1928 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

Unexpected Answer — Rene Magritte


Unexpected Answer, 1933 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

Elective Affinities — Rene Magritte

rene magritte_06

Les affinités électives (Elective Affinities), 1933 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)

One night, I woke up in a room in which a cage with a bird sleeping in it had been placed. A magnificent error caused me to see an egg in the cage, instead of the vanished bird. I then grasped a new and astonishing poetic secret, for the shock which I experienced had been provoked precisely by the affinity of two objects—the cage and the egg—to each other, whereas previously this shock had been caused by my bringing together two objects that were unrelated. [via]

From Marcel Paquet’s Magritte. Taschen, 2006.

The Flood — Rene Magritte


L’Inondation (The Flood), 1928 by Rene Magritte (1898-1967)