René Magritte and the Art of Thinking  book cover
1st Edition

René Magritte and the Art of Thinking

ISBN 9781138054271
Published April 26, 2019 by Routledge
156 Pages 14 Color & 40 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

For René Magritte, painting was a form of thinking. Through paintings of ordinary objects rendered with illusionism, Magritte probed the limits of our perception—what we see and cannot see, the nature of representation—as a philosophical system for presenting ideas, and explored perspective as a method of visual argumentation. This book makes the claim that Magritte’s painting is about vision and the act of viewing, of perception itself, and the process of how we see and experience things in the world, including paintings as things.

Table of Contents


1. Bringing Thought to Life;

2. The Use of Speech in Painting;

3. The Mystery of the Visible;

4. Inspired Thought;

5. Conclusion: Ends and Endings

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Lisa Lipinski is Assistant Professor of art history at The George Washington University, USA.


"Applying post-structuralist theory from key figures like Derrida, Foucault, and Deleuze, Lipinski analyzes a broad swath of Magritte’s paintings, supporting her argument with interviews and various writings. Preeminent and less critically explored paintings are given equal attention, allowing for a more nuanced look at Magritte’s concepts and themes. Recommended."


"The book is an indispensable publication for all Magritte enthusiasts and for all modern art teachers and students and ends with an overview of the literature and an extensive index of keywords."

--Optische Fenomenen