Collector Edward James invited the artist to paint three canvases for the ballroom of his London home. In response, the artist conceived a bizarre portrait of James standing in front of his mantelpiece mirror. The following year, he painted Time Transfixed, in which a tiny locomotive emerges incongruously from the vent customarily used for a fireplace stovepipe. Magritte later expressed dissatisfaction with the English translation of this painting's original French title, La Durée poignardé, which literally means “ongoing time stabbed by a dagger.” When Magritte sent the picture to James, he hoped that it would be installed at the bottom of the collector's staircase so that the train would “stab” guests on their way up to the ballroom.
Original artwork provenance: Private collection
All images: © 2012 C. Herscovici, Brussels / ADAGP, Paris
|Dimensions||60 x 40 cm|