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The Listening Room
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It seems like The Listening Room by René Magritte should have been named The Looking Room, what with the unfathomably large apple in the middle of it, but what do I know?

This is not the only time that Magritte presented a green apple in his work. Other pieces like The Son of Man, Ceci n'est pas une pomme, Le prêtre marié, The Habit, and The Postcard also feature the artist’s fav fruit. And like the popular kid in school, Magritte made his own interests interesting to other people – people like Paul McCartney and Steve Jobs, who not so coincidentally named their corporations Apple Records and Apple Inc. This is all well and good but it still doesn’t explain why Magritte used the apple and why he made it so freaking big. The artist explains, “Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see. There is an interest in that which is hidden and which the visible does not show us. This interest can take the form of a quite intense feeling, a sort of conflict, one might say, between the visible that is hidden and the visible that is present.” So now the question is what the heck is behind the apple?! Because Magritte is a Surrealist, it could be literally anything, making our curiosity all the more painful. And after some serious thought on the subject, we realized that maybe the apple isn’t abnormally large after all. Maybe it’s the room that is just really small. Add this to the list of things we’ll never know.

This piece is one of two in existence. They are not exactly identical, though. The other Listening Room, which is a part of some lucky bastard’s private collection, features the apple in a gray brick room with an arched, open window. This version was featured on the cover of the album Beck-Ola by The Jeff Beck Group. Jeff Beck, who started the oh-so-originally named Jeff Beck Group, was named fifth on Rolling Stone’s “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” list. He’s also probably the guitarist with the best taste in cover art. As album covers go, The Listening Room has to be one of the coolest.



 

Sources

Sources

  1. "100 Greatest Guitarists." Rolling Stone. N.p., 2015. Web. 13 Mar. 2018.
  2. Akkam, Alia. "5 Moments When Apples Were A Big Deal In Pop Culture." Hvmag.com. N.p., 2014. Web. 6 Feb. 2018.
  3. Puchko, Kristy. "10 Things You Might Not Know About The Son Of Man." Mentalfloss.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 13 Mar. 2018.
  4. "René Magritte, Belgian, 1898 - 1967 - The Listening Room (La Chambre D'écoute) - The Menil Collection." The Menil Collection. Web. 6 Feb. 2018.
  5. Silver, Craig. "How A Magritte Painting Led To Apple Computer." Forbes.com. N.p., 2013. Web. 13 Mar. 2018.
  6. "The Listening Room, 1952 By Rene Magritte." Rene Magritte. Web. 6 Feb. 2018.
  7. "The Listening Room By René Magritte - Facts About The Painting." Totally History -. Web. 13 Mar. 2018.

Featured Content

Here is what Wikipedia says about The Listening Room

The Listening Room (La Chambre d'Écoute, 1952) is an oil on canvas painting by the Belgian surrealist René Magritte which is currently part of the Menil Collection in Houston, Texas. A later version of the painting (also of the same name) was made in 1958 and is held in a private collection.

Both paintings feature identical (or near-identical) green apples, but place them in different rooms. In the 1952 version, the room has wood flooring and a glass window with white trim. In the 1958 version, this is replaced by a gray brick room with an arched open-air window.

The painting highlights a number of themes common in Magritte's work. Other paintings to prominently feature an apple include The Son of Man (1964), where the apple obscures the face of bowler-hatted man, and This is not an Apple (1964), where an apple is accompanied by the caption "Ceci n'est pas une pomme" ("This is not an apple"). It is also one of many paintings to play with the concept of scale by juxtaposing objects normally of different sizes. In Elective Affinities (1933) an egg is pictured filling a birdcage, in The Tomb of the Wrestlers (1961) a red rose fills a room and in Personal Values (1951–52) common household objects such as a comb, a glass and a bar of soap dwarf the usual furniture in a bedroom.

The 1958 reproduction of the painting was used for the album cover of Beck-Ola by The Jeff Beck Group.

It was also used in "Heart Attack" by Loona (specifically Chuu’s solo) as an interactive scenario.

Check out the full Wikipedia article about The Listening Room.