Monday, August 22, 2011

Monday Inspiration: Lucian Freud

Girl with Kitten, Lucian Freud, 1947, oil on canvas (source)

Girl with Closed Eyes, Lucian Freud, 1986-87, oil on canvas (source)

Large Interior (after Watteau), Lucian Freud, 1981-83, (source)
 Lucian Frued- the grandson of Sigmund- was well known for his nude paintings- which I didn't include here- but hey are worth looking up- Benefit Supervisor Sleeping was sold for 17 million pounds, which was the highest known price for a painting by a living artist, that particular painting has a lushness about the background that really appeals to me. In fact that's what I love most about his works- The backgrounds, are for the most part- incredibly painted.

The patterns in the couches- the peeling paint on a wall- the slightly off kilter- wavy look about them, really make me intrigued. I appreciate the feeling that's imbued in each work- they all feel as though they're painted in the same lighting- the same room- the same environment, but they're so richly painted all throughout the work- not just the subject- you don't for an instant get the impression that any part of the work was secondary. I think that's extraordinary- there's a great quote here- from the model of Benefits Supervisor Sleeping- and it gives credence to the idea that he didn't 'finish up' any part of the work quickly- apparently that work was done in nine months- and he took a longish break in that time because she got a tan! and he didn't like it.

I appreciate that attention to detail, and there idea that making art is work- that it's a craft- that you spend time doing, and perfecting. I strive to have that sort of feeling in my own work as well- though sometimes I do hurry through (the flip side of procrastination dontcha' know) and I do think my works are worse off for it, or maybe just my peace of mind about a piece is worse off- At any rate- I think Freud had it right with the way he made art, taking care while making it.

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