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Friday, July 22nd, 2011

Lucian Freud Remembered


In tribute to Lucian Freud, who died in London yesterday, July 21, at the age of 88, artcritical offers a tribute by writer Franklin Einspruch and a garland of reviews from our archives: a recently posted review by Stephen Maine of Martin Gayford’s Man with a Blue Scarf: On Sitting for a Portrait by Lucian Freud, and reviews of his 2004 and 2006 exhibitions of new works in New York, by David Cohen and John Goodrich respectively.  More words will follow as our writers digest the contribution and achievements of this most singular of painters.

David Dawson, David Hockney; Lucian Freud, 2003. C-type colour print, ?10 3/8 x 15 1/2 inches. Courtesy of the Artist

David Dawson, David Hockney; Lucian Freud, 2003. C-type colour print, ?10 3/8 x 15 1/2 inches. Courtesy of the Artist


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One Response to Lucian Freud Remembered

  1. Donald Lindeman says:

    Lucian Freud was born into a distinguished family, and had a name anyone would know, but he was born with the passion to make art as well. His accomplishment comes off as some kind of unexpected miracle. It is possible, I think, to find sources for his work in the art of Courbet, Constable (in his rare cityscape views), and Stanley Spencer; but Freud genuinely came into his own, actualizing a style that could only be his. He is known for his portraits of course, however I think it is in the nude that he truly excelled. His is an accomplishment that I believe could only have been carried out in Europe, and it is not surprising that it occured in Great Britain, where being “typically British”, for him, was not a handicap. His attitude toward the nude figure was a paradoxical result of a clinical detachment which did not exclude empathy on his part, nor the emanation of the model’s persona. His figures were both representative of the human genus per se, and individuals in their own right. When the art history of our era is written, I believe that Freud will be regarded as the artist who did the most to establish a viable continuum connecting the art of the past to our present, and, to whatever the art of the future is that we shall acquire. His was not a reactionary art, but rather an original art wherein observation, empathy and technique made the eternal new.
    –Donald Lindeman

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