PUBLISHER
D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers, Inc.

BOOK FORMAT
Hardcover, 10.5 x 13 in. / 336 pgs / 400 color.

PUBLISHING STATUS
Pub Date
Active

DISTRIBUTION
D.A.P. Exclusive
Catalog: SPRING 2009 p. 169   

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9781933045931 TRADE
List Price: $85.00 CDN $100.00

AVAILABILITY
Out of stock

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D.A.P./DISTRIBUTED ART PUBLISHERS, INC.

Magritte: Attempting the Impossible

Text by Siegfried Gohr.

This extremely well-illustrated tour de force combines new research with unique organization. Obligatory chapters introduce Magritte's early development (during which his work revealed the heavy influence of De Chirico, Leger, and Le Corbusier) and his use of other media (graphic design, illustration, drawings, collages) in addition to oil paintings. Then Gohr (Düsseldorf Art Academy) employs a thematic approach suggested by one primary work per chapter, which is described in detail and linked to similar works in the artist's oeuvre. As readers progress through the book, details of the artist's life, training, travels, and inspirations unfold like ripples caused by a pebble tossed into liquid. Themes range from those based on content (the picture within a picture, images of women, use of language, works about other artists' works) to style and process (the nature of Magritte's pictorial space, his working methods, etc.). This structure will engage the novice's imagination and will intrigue the Magritte connoisseur. Gohr's book reminds readers that excellent art never ceases to provide new avenues for investigation, through both research and careful visual examination of the art as primary document. Summing Up: Highly recommended.<p>--E. K. Mix, Butler University, <I>CHOICE</I> MagazineThe ongoing relevance of Belgian painter René Magritte may lie in the semiotic character of his work and its ability to create chasms between the world, its surfaces and the signs we use to occupy it. Magritte's paintings offer a space for the viewer to contemplate the emptiness of signs and to locate that emptiness in a world we recognize--indeed, the artist relies on the props of normalcy in order to upend, invert and collapse them into the terra incognita where life leaves off and art begins. "The mind loves the unknown," he avowed, "it loves images whose meaning is unknown, since the meaning of the mind itself is unknown." In Attempting the Impossible we have a new definitive Magritte monograph, replacing David Sylvester's volume of the early 1990s. Featuring more than 300 works, it contains much unpublished material and includes chapters covering Magritte's photography, drawings and influence on German and American contemporary art. Each chapter opens with a close reading of a key work--such as "The Treachery of Images" ("This is not a pipe") of 1928-29--and a reconstruction of its intellectual and historical contexts. Art historian Siegfried Gohr examines Magritte's marriage and friendships, the phases of his work (from his sunlit Renoir period and his "période vache" to his bright and visually arresting postwar work, which had such an influence on the advertising industry), the Belgian roots of his wit and sensibility and his word paintings and investigations into the paradoxes of representation.

This extremely well-illustrated tour de force combines new research with unique organization. Obligatory chapters introduce Magritte's early development (during which his work revealed the heavy influence of De Chirico, Leger, and Le Corbusier) and his use of other media (graphic design, illustration, drawings, collages) in addition to oil paintings. Then Gohr (Düsseldorf Art Academy) employs a thematic approach suggested by one primary work per chapter, which is described in detail and linked to similar works in the artist's oeuvre. As readers progress through the book, details of the artist's life, training, travels, and inspirations unfold like ripples caused by a pebble tossed into liquid. Themes range from those based on content (the picture within a picture, images of women, use of language, works about other artists' works) to style and process (the nature of Magritte's pictorial space, his working methods, etc.). This structure will engage the novice's imagination and will intrigue the Magritte connoisseur. Gohr's book reminds readers that excellent art never ceases to provide new avenues for investigation, through both research and careful visual examination of the art as primary document. Summing Up: Highly recommended.

--E. K. Mix, Butler University, CHOICE Magazine

Magritte: Attempting the Impossible

STATUS: Out of stock

Temporarily out of stock pending additional inventory.

FROM THE BOOK
This extremely well-illustrated tour de force combines new research with unique organization. Obligatory chapters introduce Magritte's early development (during which his work revealed the heavy influence of De Chirico, Leger, and Le Corbusier) and his use of other media (graphic design, illustration, drawings, collages) in addition to oil paintings. Then Gohr (Düsseldorf Art Academy) employs a thematic approach suggested by one primary work per chapter, which is described in detail and linked to similar works in the artist's oeuvre. As readers progress through the book, details of the artist's life, training, travels, and inspirations unfold like ripples caused by a pebble tossed into liquid. Themes range from those based on content (the picture within a picture, images of women, use of language, works about other artists' works) to style and process (the nature of Magritte's pictorial space, his working methods, etc.). This structure will engage the novice's imagination and will intrigue the Magritte connoisseur. Gohr's book reminds readers that excellent art never ceases to provide new avenues for investigation, through both research and careful visual examination of the art as primary document. Summing Up: Highly recommended.

--E. K. Mix, Butler University, CHOICE Magazine

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