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Alfa Romeo Advertisement by René Magritte (1924)

Rene Magritte - Alpha Romeo Ad, Englebert Magazine (Liege, Belgium), January-February, 1925
Rene Magritte - Alpha Romeo Ad, Englebert Magazine (Liege, Belgium), January-February, 1925
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Clearly influenced by Cubist art, the poster created in 1924 by René Magritte, depicts the car in a surreal urban context.

Two elegantly-clad female figures are shown to emphasise the class of the motor car.


René François Ghislain Magritte (1898-1967) was born in Lessines, Belgium. His father was a tailor and textile merchant; his mother committed suicide in 1912, drowning herself in the River Sambre. Four years later, Magritte enrolled at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, before spending short periods in the Belgian infantry, and as a draughtsman in a wallpaper factory. In 1924 he began work as a freelance graphic designer in Brussels. Over the next five years he produced advertisements for many clients, including a Belgian fashion house and Alfa Romeo.

Magritte’s successful career in advertising [he ran an agency, Studio Dongo, with his brother, Paul, in the 1930s] probably helped to hone his idea of how to make an image stick. In a tumbledown shack in his garden, Magritte created posters, music covers and advertisements right up until the 1950s, long after he had become internationally acknowledged as an artist. He never abandoned the commercial world, but went on appropriating its advertising strategies into much of his art.
Source: alfaromeo.com; www.christies.com
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