All Eyes On Magritte Landscape at Sotheby's
All Eyes On Magritte Landscape at Sotheby's

René Magritte, L'empire des lumières (1961). Courtesy Sotheby's.

All eyes will be on René Magritte's L'empire des lumières today at Sotheby's.

⁠⁠Painted for Anne-Marie Gillion Crowet in 1961, the iconic work has been kept in the collection until today. ⁠⁠

The painting is one of 17 oil paintings titled 'L'empire des lumières'—a series born out of the high demand for a 1954 version at that year's Venice Biennale. Four buyers were promised the work at the Biennale, and while it ended up in the hands of Peggy Guggenheim, Magritte produced 3 additional paintings for those who had lost out. ⁠⁠

Of the 17 paintings produced between 1950 and 1961, this later work is the largest horizontal version that Magritte produced. With an estimate in excess of $60M, the sale is set to trump Magritte's current record of $26.8M at Sotheby's in 2018 for his much earlier painting, Le Principe du plaisir. ⁠⁠


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