Tag Archives: Belgian Artists
Early Years and Personal Life
Rene Magritte or Rene Francois Ghislain Magritte as he was known was a Belgian artist from the early 20th century. He was born in the city of Lessines, Belgium, on the 21st of November 1898. He came from a middle class family, and was the son of a tailor named Leopold Magritte and Regina Magritte who had been a milliner before marriage. Rene Magritte had shown great interest and aptitude for drawing from an early age and he began taking his first proper drawing lessons when he was 12 years old.
Very little is known about Magritte’s early life but it is known that he had a traumatic experience when he was 14 years old, his mother committed suicide in 1914. This wasn’t the first time that his mother had tried to commit suicide, she had done so unsuccessfully for a number of times before too. It is believed that the young Magritte was present at the time his mother’s body was recovered from the river where she had drowned.
The death of his mother, and the fact that her dress was covering her face when she was recovered is said to have had a profound effect on the young Rene Magritte, and this disturbing image has been the source of several paintings made by Magritte during the 1927-1928 era, his subjects in these paintings also had their faces covered by some form of cloth.
He would go on to create many world renowned paintings over the next half century, always inspiring wonder and a sense of mystique in his viewers.