“The Healer” is one of the eight pictorial images that surrealist painter Rene Magritte “translated” into three-dimensional form.
Magritte had a precise idea of what he wanted to achieve and went about finding the ideal means to execute these sculptures. For “The Healer” he made a plaster cast from the feet of a live model, and did the same for the bird cage.
“The Healer” has a number of features characteristic to Magritte’s enterprise, including the element of the unexpected, the extraordinary within the ordinary, and the mysterious. This sculpture, variations of which can be found in at least four of his paintings, came from a photograph that Magritte took in 1937, titled “God on the Eight Day”.
Although he was a painter, by translating eight paintings into sculptures, Magritte provided a different perspective on the function of objects and forms. Detached from the confines of the picture plane, they are placed in the space as autonomous presences and, through the change in scale, become different entities.