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Friends

Alexandre Iolas
1908-1987
art dealer

A former dancer, of Greek origin, converted to dealing art in New York, Alexandre Iolas benefitted from early support on the part of Elizabeth Arden and the De Menil family. In February 1946, Iolas makes contact with Magritte, being aware of growing American interest in surrealism, which had benefitted from the diaspora of artists from this group to New York during WWII. The painter and dealer quickly came to an agreement and, in April 1947, Magritte has an exhibition at the Hugo Gallery in New York.  In touch with the particularities of the American market, Iolas encourages Magritte to produce copies and variations of earlier gouaches and oils.  It was Iolas, too, who in 1967 suggested Magritte transpose his works in three-dimensions. Unfortunately, casts in bronze could only be made after the artist’s death.

René Magritte and Alexandre Iolas, 1965 © Photo Steve Schapiro for Life