Exploring Science Fiction:
René Magritte’s La Voix des airs (The Voice of Space), 1928
This week, to celebrate Kelly Richardson: Legion and the Science Fiction Film Festival that will be presented in conjunction with the exhibition during M&T FIRST FRIDAYS @ THE GALLERY this Friday, we will be featuring works from the Gallery’s Collection that explore themes kindred to Richardson’s work and science fiction films. We will especially explore the function of science fiction, which, according to the artist, “allows us to experience what life might be like in the future.”
In 1928, René Magritte (Belgian, 1898–1967) painted this version of La Voix des airs (The Voice of Space), yet he also executed several other versions in his lifetime. This daring and haunting image of black orbs floating in a dark space represents the landscape of a place referred to as the Black Country, in Belgium, where the artist grew up. Although this work is based on a real place, Magritte’s poetic visual language elevates his imagery to a mysterious realm outside of the human experience, which the artist felt could never be fully explained. Much of science fiction, on the other hand, aims to explain these very types of mysteries.
IMAGE: © 2012 C. Herscovici, London / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York