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Brussels Airlines paints over Magritte aircraft

The Magritte Airbus as was. © Brussels Airlines

Brussels Airlines has announced the end of its airborne tribute to Belgian Surrealist painter René Magritte, in the form of an entire passenger aircraft decorated with a portrait of the artist and references to his work.

Magritte, along with Salvador Dali undoubtedly one of the most recognisable artists of the Surrealist movement, as well as being the subject of his own museum in Brussels, was chosen as the second of Brussels Airlines’ theme aircraft, presented to the public in March 2016, just days before the airport was hit by a terrorist attack.

The Magritte plane, an Airbus A320 was, however, the first passenger flight to take off when the airport opened again.

This is a symbol of Belgium, which gives a sign of hope,” said Brussels Airlines at the time.

But five years, 6,403 flights and 880,000 passengers carried later, Magritte has made way for another Belgian icon, or not so much. The aircraft is for the time being decked out in the livery of Star Alliance, the airline alliance of which Brussels Airlines has been a member since 2009.

The airline has meanwhile announced that the next special livery for the chop is the one titled Trident, which honours the Red Devils, Belgium’s national football side, as well as on the inside a tribute to the women’s team the Red Flames.

The livery will be freshened up inside and out, but the end is already planned for November 2022.

Other special designs in the fleet are Rackham (Tintin), the first of its type, Amare (Tomorrowland), due to last until 2023 at least, Aerosmurf (the Smurfs) and the youngest Bruegel, both expected to last until at least 2024.

The airline is committed to having five special planes in service, which means another theme will soon have to be found to replace Magritte. The airline said it will be on a sporting theme for sure, not necessarily football.