Belgian surrealist artist (1898-1967). Le Problème du Fantôme. Sketchbook containing 49 sketches for an unpainted work. [Brussels. Sketchbook with 49 drawings, 6 are signed, one is dated "13 August 1946"; (5 1/2 x 4 1/8 in.; 140 x 105 mm); pencil or ink; the sketchbook is titled on the cover "Le Problème du Fantôme.".
Insight into Magritte's creative process. The sketchbook, used probably during the war, shows studies for several Magritte paintings made between 1941 and 1948: The Meteor (Sylvester, II, 559), The Civilizer (Sylvester, II, 574), The Tempest (Sylvester, II, 576) or Pure Reason (Sylvester, II, 659). - It presents also a remarkable series of studies of iconic Magritte references as hair, women, landscapes or leaves that resemble birds, used for different paintings such as Knowledge of the Natural (Sylvester, II, 488), Daily Bread (Sylvester, II, 497), The Rape (Sylvester, II, 580) or The Fire (Sylvester, II, 599).
Others studies are traditional representations of ghosts (a large white sheet) in a Magrittian way (with a smiling face, with woman, a leaf, a ship, a balloon or a drop in the middle of the shadow) for a work he probably never painted.