woensdag 28 oktober 2009

In the style of René Magritte

Made by Nikki, 11 years old

Rene Magritte is born in 1898 in Belgium. When Magritte is 13 years old, his mother commits suicide. She jumps in the river Samber and is found with her dress covering her face. This image has been suggested as the source of several paintings from Magritte: people hiding their faces with several objects.

In 1924 Magritte became friends with members of a surrealism group in Brussels: André Breton, Joan Miró and Salvador Dalí. These artists influence Magritte's work. In the end Magritte became famous with surrealistic paintings.

Magritte gave his paintings a realistic effect of surrealism. He painted simple objects, like a shoe, an apple, a pipe or a tree. Magritte took these things out of their ordinary environment and placed them in a special surrounding.

One of Magritte's most famous works is "La Trahison des Images" (The Treachery of Images). This is a very realistic painting from a pipe, with the text: Ceci n'est pas une pipe (This is not a pipe). The painting is not a pipe, but rather an image of a pipe. As Magritte himself commented: "The famous pipe. How people reproached me for it! And yet, could you stuff my pipe? No, it's just a representation, is it not? So if I had written on my picture 'This is a pipe,' I'd have been lying!"

By putting us constantly on the wrong track, Magritte forces us to think about art. Magritte thought it the task of an artist to place reality in a different context.

Nikki working on her version of Magritte

You need:
  1. drawing sheets A3 size
  2. brushes and water containers
  3. old newspapers
  4. tempera paint
  5. (black markers)
Show Magritte's work and talk about surrealism. Ask children to tell what they see in those surrealistic paintings. Talk about realism and show realistic paintings. What are the differences between these two styles? How do you recognize surrealistic art? Show the painting The son of man and tell about the covered faces we'll see in a lot of Magritte's paintings.

Made by Kiki, 11 years old

Children sketch a portrait, just like Magritte did. It doesn't have to be someone special, just a person. Instead of an apple, they choose a present-day object to cover the face. This object has to be about as large as a face, so a piano or a coin can't be used! Options: an Ipod, cell phone, candy or something. When sketching is finished, the drawing has to be painted. When necessary, students can outline the covering object with a fineliner.

Made by Jetse, 12 years old

1 opmerking:

  1. I love this project. Your students did a wonderful job on this. I just might have to try it sometime with my students.