Opened in June, 2009, the Magritte Museum displays works of the surrealist artist for which it is named. Located in the heart of Brussels at the Place Royale, the museum is housed in the neo-classical landmark Altenloh Hotel, superbly restored in 1984 with the generous support of the Franco-Belgian group GDF SUEZ and the Magritte Foundation, and operates as part of the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium. Instantly popular, the museum welcomed over 500,000 visitors in its first year of operation.
The museum’s multi-disciplinary collection is unrivaled. It contains more than 200 works consisting of oils on canvas, gouaches, drawings, sculptures and painted objects as well as advertising posters, musical scores, vintage photographs and films produced by the artist. The collection is comprised of purchases by the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, which owns the collection, and gifts from the Irène Hamoir-Scutenaire and Georgette Magritte estates. Additionally, many private collectors, as well as public and private institutions, loan art to the museum through an ambitious lending program.
The Magritte Museum is also the primary repository for research on the artist. With the support of INEO media system, the museum has developed an online research center which provides access to archives about the painter\'s life and works, an invaluable resource not only for art scholars, students, and academicians worldwide, but also for anyone interested in learning more about this national treasure of Belgium.
The Museums Award is an initiative of the magazine “Openbaar Kunstbezit in Vlaanderen” in collaboration with the Law firm Linklaters. Every year a Museum, one for each region of Belgium, is awarded a prize of 10.000 €.
In parallel with this prize, a Public Award is also given to three other museums in Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels. Through the Public Award, people were able to choose their favorite museum by voting until the 15th of May on the websites www.museumprijs.be and www.prixdesmusees.be or by filling an official ballot paper distributed by the Media Partners of the Museum Prize. This year, the Musée Magritte Museum brightly won the Public Award.
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Magritte started painting again at the end of 1925, after a break of almost two years. These were his first Surrealist works. The influence of Giorgio de Chirico is unmistakeable in the atmosphere of this painting, which is at once theatrical and dreamlike.
The Midnight Marriage (1926), Oil on canvas
© Charly Herscovici, with his kind authorization
c/o SABAM-ADAGP, 2012