RENE MAGRITTE (1898-1967)
L’empire des lumières
signed 'Magritte' (lower right); titled and dated '"L'EMPIRE des LUMIÈRES" 1949' (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
19 1⁄8 x 23 1⁄8 in. (48.5 x 58.8 cm.)
Painted in 1949
Alexander Iolas Gallery, New York (acquired from the artist, August 1949).
Hugo Gallery, New York (acquired from the above).
Nelson A. Rockefeller, New York (acquired from the above, 30 March 1950).
Louise Auchincloss Boyer, New York (gift from the above, December 1950).
Gordon Auchincloss Robbins, New York (by descent from the above, July 1974).
Louis K. Meisel Gallery, New York (acquired from the above).
Daniel Filipacchi, Paris (acquired from the above, 1974).
Byron Gallery, New York (by 1978).
Private collection (acquired from the above, 1981); sale, Christie's, New York, 13 November 2017, lot 12A (world auction record for the artist at the time of sale).
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner.
Letter from R. Magritte to A. Iolas, 8 August 1949.
Letter from R. Magritte to A. Iolas, 2 March 1950.
Letter from A. Iolas to R. Magritte, 7 April 1950.
Magritte, exh. cat., Hugo Gallery, New York, 1951, no. 8 (illustrated on the back cover).
H. Michaux, “En rêvant à partir de peintures énigmatiques” in Mercure de France, December 1964, pp. 593-594.
C. Bussy, “L’accent grave: Emission radiophonique” in Le fait accompli, nos. 19-20, April 1969.
Peintures de l'imaginaire: Symbolistes et Surréalistes belges, exh. cat., Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, Paris, 1972, p. 118.
J. Vovelle, “Peintres de l’imaginaire: Symbolistes et surréalistes belges” in Cahiers d’histoire de l’art
contemporain, no. 2, March 1973, p. 34.
D. Sylvester, ed., René Magritte: Catalogue Raisonné, Oil Paintings, Objects and Bronzes, 1949-1967, London, 1993, vol. III, pp. 4-5, 10, 17, 77, 145, 157, 162, 187, 200, 210, 222, 227, 228, 261, 368 and 387, no. 709 (illustrated in color, p. 145).
S. Gohr, Magritte: Attempting the Impossible, New York, 2009, pp. 224-226 (illustrated in color, p. 225).
C. Haskell, René Magritte: The Fifth Season, exh. cat., San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2018, p. 126 (illustrated in color, pl. 51).
Brussels, Palais des Beaux-Arts and Paris, Musée national d'art moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Rétrospective Magritte, October 1978-April 1979, p. 224, no. 145 (illustrated in color; detail illustrated in color on the cover).
Milan, Galleria del Milione, Magritte: Il buon senso e il senso delle cose, May 1984, p. 51, no. 11 (illustrated in color, p. 37).