René Magritte

/Works and biography


Voice of Space (La Voix des airs), 1931
Oil on canvas, 72.7 x 54.2 cm
Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice 75.2553 PG 101
© René Magritte, by SIAE 2008


Influenced by Giorgio de Chirico, René Magritte sought to strip objects of their usual functions and meanings in order to convey an irrationally compelling image. In Voice of Space, the bells float in the air. By distorting the scale, weight, and use of an ordinary object and inserting it into a variety of unaccustomed contexts, Magritte confers on that object a fetishistic intensity. The disturbing impact of the bells presented in an unfamiliar setting is intensified by the cool academic precision with which they and their environment are painted. The dainty slice of landscape could be the backdrop of an early Renaissance painting, while the bells themselves, in their rotund and glowing monumentality, impart a mysterious resonance.

credits: Hangar Design Group