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The Guardian

Sep 11 2020
The best new design, from posters that clean the air to the youngest artist in the Tate collection

News and design stories from around the world, including the latest from London Design Festival

The best events at London Design Festival and London Craft Week, art postcards, takeaway packaging you’ll want to keep, a new hero for children and everything you need for camping – including a kitchen sink

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The Guardian

Sep 11 2020
Muhammad Ali up-close and a mother's gaze – the week in art

Next exhibitions celebrate women of the Scottish avant garde, pioneering photographer Gordon Parks’ shots of Muhammad Ali, and a mother’s raw paintings of her daughter – all in your weekly dispatch

Chantal Joffe: For Esme – With Love and Squalor
Raw and expressive paintings of Joffe’s daughter Esme reveal a mother’s feelings as her child grows up.
Arnolfini, Bristol, until 22 November.

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The Guardian

Sep 11 2020
Tavares Strachan’s Every Knee Shall Bow: cryptic clues

The New York-based conceptual artist reiterates the power of narrative, as told by the storyteller

A weekly Guide column in which we dissect the influences and interpretations of a work of art

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The Guardian

Sep 11 2020
Our Time Machine: a moving documentary on art, family and dementia

Acclaimed Chinese artist Maleonn found an unusual way to stage a tribute and a time capsule to his family when his father’s health deteriorates

Maleonn, the acclaimed Chinese conceptual artist and the son of the former director of the Shanghai Chinese Opera Theater, had wanted his latest project – Papa’s Time Machine, an autobiographical play told by life-sized puppets – to be a family affair. But the realities of his father’s quickly deteriorating health would soon throw his plans into disarray.

“I remember when I first decided to pursue a path in the fine arts my father joked about the whole family coming together to put on a play,” he says to the Guardian. “That was precisely my intention with [Papa’s Time Machine]. I wanted my father to direct. I was going to be the artistic director, and I wanted my mother to perform. But in the early planning stages, I called my father one morning to talk about our collaboration and he responded, ‘What play? I don’t remember any play.’”

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The Guardian

Sep 10 2020
Astronomy photographer of the year (2020) winners – in pictures

Images of the Milky Way, California nebula and Andromeda galaxy are among the winners of the Insight Investment astronomy photographer of the year award. An exhibition of the winning pictures can be viewed at National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, south-east London, from 23 October

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The Guardian

Sep 10 2020
Comedy Wildlife Photography awards 2020 finalists – in pictures

Take a look at some of the light-hearted images of wildlife submitted by finalists from this year’s Comedy Wildlife Photography awards

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The New York Times

Sep 10 2020
New York’s Reopened Museums: Where to Go and What to See
New York’s Reopened Museums: Where to Go and What to See
What you need to know before venturing back out to see art, from safety precautions to the exhibitions still on view.
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The New York Times

Sep 10 2020
How Three Artists Are Exploring Mythology and Race
In re-examining historical narratives and classical stories, these artists are creating images that speak on multiple levels to the experiences of being Black and female.
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The New York Times

Sep 10 2020
3 Art Gallery Shows to See Right Now
Frank Jones’s fanciful drawings; Lyles & King’s inaugural exhibition in its new space; and Serena Stevens’s haunting paintings.
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artforum.com

Sep 10 2020
Studio Museum in Harlem Announces Remote Artists-in-Residence
New York’s Studio Museum in Harlem has announced its 2020–21 artists-in-residence, the New York Times reports. The prestigious program, which was established in 1968 and typically fosters rising talent,
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artforum.com

Sep 10 2020
Saatchi Heir to Open Massive New Gallery in London
Phoebe Saatchi Yates, daughter of noted collector Charles Saatchi, has announced plans to open a 10,000-square-foot gallery in London that will exhibit the work of “unknown” and “unseen” artists. The
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The Guardian

Sep 10 2020
Not Without My Ghosts review – Yikes! It's time to unleash your inner Scooby Doo

Drawing Room, London
From a seance with a museum in space to Victorian spectres and an artist more depraved than Aubrey Beardsley, this fascinating celebration of ethereal forces keeps wrecking the spooky mood

It’s a ghost! And a naughty one at that. The apparition floats up, sprouting faun-like forms and wicked faces in what resembles a cloud of opium smoke. This vision, in a drawing by the early 20th-century British occultist Austin Osman Spare, emanates from a creature at the bottom of the page, whose hand is hard at work between his thighs. Another work by Spare, in this exhibition about “mediumistic drawing”, blossoms with spectral faces and devilish beings surrounding a nude youth in ecstasy.

Spare is fantastic, like an even more depraved Aubrey Beardsley, taking the fin de siècle master’s luscious graphics into seedy and deranged territory. For Spare seems to genuinely believe he has Seen Things. His art was championed by the occult leader (his followers hate it when you say satanist) Aleister Crowley. The demons Spare portrays have an awful reality.

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The New York Times

Sep 10 2020
Pandemic Has Cut Modern and Contemporary Gallery Sales 36%, Report Says
Pandemic Has Cut Modern and Contemporary Gallery Sales 36%, Report Says
The survey, by Art Basel and UBS, analyzes the effect of the coronavirus on the world’s art dealers. Sales are down, but the wealthy are still buying.
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The New York Times

Sep 10 2020
Studio Museum in Harlem Names Artists in Residence
The museum adds a midcareer component to a program known for anointing new talent.
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The Guardian

Sep 10 2020
The Lady in the Portrait review – painterly pageantry in a Chinese royal court

Fan Bingbing stars as an emperor’s wife having her portrait painted in this artful yet inert period drama

This French-Chinese co-production about an earlier French-Chinese collaboration offers handsome pageantry amid its lavish recreation of 18th-century imperial court life, but it isn’t quite enough to compensate for a puttering narrative motor. Longtime Apichatpong Weerasethakul producer Charles de Meaux has turned director with a far eastern equivalent of Girl With a Pearl Earring – another decorous, ever so slightly sleepy matinee sit.

The film’s subject is Jean-Denis Attiret (played by Melvil Poupaud), a real-life French Jesuit missionary who spent half of his 60-odd years employed as the Chinese court painter. His trickiest commission, recalled here, came from the emperor’s bored wife (Fan Bingbing), thirsting to preserve an image that might turn her indifferent husband’s head.

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The Guardian

Sep 10 2020
Forbidden fruits: the festival images you (almost) didn't see – in pictures

Photo Basel was cancelled in June due to the pandemic – but here’s a fresh chance to see arresting shots of sweaty kisses and socialist villages which will be showing in Berlin instead

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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
Vincent Fecteau
Galerie Buchholz presents twelve new wall-mounted sculptures by San Francisco artist Vincent Fecteau. They are made from papier-mâché, epoxy clay, and acrylic, and adorned with burlap, cotton batting,
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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
Raymond Pettibon
Regen Projects is pleased to announce “Pacific Ocean Pop,” an exhibition of new drawings and collages by Raymond Pettibon. This presentation marks Pettibon’s eleventh solo show at Regen Projects since
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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
Etel Adnan
3 September–10 October 2020  13 rue de Téhéran 75008 Paris Galerie Lelong & Co. is pleased to announce Etel Adnan’s new solo exhibition “Satellites & Planètes,” with the artist’s latest works. The
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The New York Times

Sep 09 2020
The Met Hires Its First Full-Time Native American Curator
The Met Hires Its First Full-Time Native American Curator
Patricia Marroquin Norby, most recently of the National Museum of the American Indian in New York, will soon join the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
Met Announces Patricia Marroquin Norby as First Full-Time Curator of Native American Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, has hired Patricia Marroquin Norby as associate curator of Native American art; she is the first person to hold the full-time position, the creation of which
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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
José Roca Named Artistic Director of 2022 Biennale of Sydney
Colombian curator José Roca has been appointed artistic director of the 23rd Biennale of Sydney, slated to take place March 12–June 13, 2022. Currently the director of the Bogotá-based LORA ars+natura,
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The Guardian

Sep 09 2020
The city being swept out to sea: Nicky Quamina-Woo’s best photograph

‘Saint Louis is on the frontline of the climate crisis. Entire rooms in people’s homes are underwater. In a few years, the sea defence this boy is striding along will be engulfed’

This was taken in Senegal near the end of 2018. I was gearing up for a project in neighbouring Mauritania for Reuters, but I wanted to understand the region better before I dived in. I had spent a few years based in west Africa. Where Mauritania can be quite closed off to outsiders and suspicious of photographers, Senegal is much more open. I’d met a lot of people in the Senegalese diaspora in the US, where I grew up, and I’d heard a lot about Saint Louis in the north. It was the capital before Dakar took on that role, and it’s a fascinating testament to the country’s colonial past.

Unlike many colonial projects elsewhere on the continent, the French didn’t attempt to completely repress who the Senegalese were as a people, and the city bears the marks of its complicated history. Much of the old town’s architecture is very French. Lots of mixed race people born of relationships between local women and French soldiers also live in Saint Louis. I was captivated by its history and its present.

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The New York Times

Sep 09 2020
An Artist Continues Her Applause for Essential Workers
An Artist Continues Her Applause for Essential Workers
Mierle Laderman Ukeles is known for shaking the hand of every employee in the Department of Sanitation. Her latest work may be less tactile, but it is no less heartfelt.
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artforum.com

Sep 09 2020
Dennis Zhou on Pietro Marcello’s Martin Eden (2019)
JACK LONDON has always been better understood abroad than at home. At different times in his life a gold prospector, an oyster pirate, a hobo, and a millionaire, London was also a committed
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The Guardian

Sep 09 2020
A funny thing happened: stunning portraits of stellar standups – in pictures

From Ken Dodd and his tickling stick to Nina Conti and her monkey, Guardian photographer Tristram Kenton has snapped a host of superb comedians on stage

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The Guardian

Sep 09 2020
Mantelpiece stories: treasured objects of Bolton residents - a photo essay

Photographer Madeleine Waller focuses on the treasured objects that people choose to display in their homes and the stories they tell. Bolton residents talk to her about the meanings behind their keepsakes and mementoes.

Mantelpiece Stories is exhibited in Bolton Museum’s community gallery, alongside other displays commissioned as part of an Arts Council funded mantelpiece project, from 12 September

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The Guardian

Sep 08 2020
Rising sons: the radical photography of postwar Japan – in pictures

Between 1957 and 1972, Japanese photography was revolutionised ... twice! These images spotlight the Vivo artists and the magazine Provoke, with its motto: rough, blurred, out-of-focus

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The Guardian

Sep 08 2020
'I'd love to have a massive smoke with George Michael' – Dawn Mellor's Wham-tastic mural

The artist paints stars disfigured by showbiz. So what treatment will the beloved, scandal-rocked George Michael receive? Ahead of the work’s hometown unveiling, we get a sneak preview

Next week sees the unveiling of a huge, nine-metre-high George Michael mural – and it still might not be big enough. Since the pop star died on Christmas Day 2016, at the age of 53, his legend has only grown, backed up by his catalogue of titanium-plated hits, his evolving image as a gay rights icon, his acts of discreet generosity and, as his cameo on Extras proved, the fact that he seemed a good laugh. No pressure, then, for the artist who is daubing the whole thing on a wall just off the main street in Kingsbury, the north London suburb where the singer grew up.

“I’m kind of underestimating how popular he was,” says Dawn Mellor, the 50-year-old artist who has taken on the task. Manchester-born and Derbyshire-raised, the painter is a warm, livewire presence, with piercing eyes and a closely shaved head. Mellor, who is non-binary and goes by the pronouns they/them, is on the second day of painting when we speak via Zoom. They have spent the day going up and down ladders, rain permitting, and the scale of the task, in every sense, is starting to become clear. “Everybody seems to love George Michael! Nobody’s got a bad word to say about him, which I didn’t realise beforehand.”

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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
Ben Sledsens
September 3–October 10, 2020 Tim Van Laere Gallery presents the third solo exhibition by Ben Sledsens (°1991 Antwerp, lives and works in Antwerp), entitled “Morning Moon.” Sledsens' works attest to
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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
Rochelle Goldberg on "Psycomachia"
Rochelle Goldberg on her exhibition “Psychomachia” at Miguel Abreu Gallery (March 6 - August 22, 2020), working with medieval genres, and reimagining Mary of Egypt. 
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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
MFA Boston Names Rosa Rodriguez-Williams First Director of Belonging and Inclusion
Following a disturbing 2019 racial incident within its confines, and just four months after it reached an agreement with the state attorney general on how to foster inclusion and diversity, the Museum
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The New York Times

Sep 08 2020
T.S. Eliot’s Estate Donates ‘Cats’ Royalties to Brontë Museum
T.S. Eliot’s Estate Donates ‘Cats’ Royalties to Brontë Museum
A gift of 20,000 pounds will help sustain the Brontë Parsonage Museum, which is facing mounting losses because of the coronavirus.
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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
Jesse Chun on lunar colonization and “unlanguaging” empire
A New York­­–based artist who has previously lived in Hong Kong, South Korea, and Canada, Jesse Chun studies the way language—especially English—shapes cultural experience. From the tedium of
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The New York Times

Sep 08 2020
Kehinde Wiley on Protests’ Results: ‘I’m Not Impressed Yet’
Kehinde Wiley on Protests’ Results: ‘I’m Not Impressed Yet’
The artist, riding out the pandemic in Dakar, also talked about torn-down Confederate monuments and where they should go — like in “a hall of horrors.”
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The New York Times

Sep 08 2020
Mark Bradford Reveals New Paintings Quarantined in a Grain Tower
Mark Bradford Reveals New Paintings Quarantined in a Grain Tower
The artist is not on social media, but he’s finally opening up about living and working in the time of Covid-19. “I went into survival mode,” he said.
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The Guardian

Sep 08 2020
In Plain Sight review – Tavares Strachan's baffling, thrilling, uplifting visions

Marian Goodman Gallery, London
You only get an hour to explore the Bahamian’s strange and astonishing worlds, populated by everyone from James Baldwin to Haile Selassie and the Queen. It’s not nearly enough

Plunged into darkness, the first thing you see is the shimmering, near-skeletal figure of Cuban prima ballerina Alicia Alonso glowing in the distance. As she became partially blind, Alonso had to retrain herself to dance, and to cue her spatial awareness to her fellow performers on stage. In this dark space, and with social distancing in place, we have to do the same. Alonso’s story is fascinating enough in itself, but it also serves as a metaphor for some of the difficulties of In Plain Sight, a baffling, complex, not to say deeply complicated exhibition by Bahamian artist Tavares Strachan.

Visitors only have an hour to see it: entry is restricted to on-the-hour slots, for more reasons than just Covid. There is no way that this is time enough. There are paintings – or something like paintings – and there are sculptures. There are things unseen and things that are difficult to look at. There is a great deal of reading to do, and if you really want to get to the bottom of all the name-checks and references that keep cropping up, it would be good to have your mobile to hand – except visitors have their phones confiscated at the entrance. It is almost a surprise that they let anyone in at all.

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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
Hauser & Wirth Names Fortnum & Mason Chief First Global CEO
Toast of the gallery scene Hauser & Wirth has been piling on the butter of late with its expansion into the luxury gift and hospitality industry; now it is reaching for the jam—or rather, for the man
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artforum.com

Sep 08 2020
Ina Archer
Murmurs of old Hollywood echo across the gallery in Ina Archer’s first solo exhibition here. But two entrancing noises stand out—a tolling bell and a percussive snap, which almost resembles a synth
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The Guardian

Sep 08 2020
Auf wiedersehen, techno: Berlin's banging Berghain club reborn as a gallery

With nightlife in limbo due to Covid-19, the legendary temple of techno has reinvented itself as art gallery – with works by Tacita Dean, Olafur Eliasson, Wolfgang Tillmans and more

Inside a disused power station in east Berlin, a red-and-white buoy is bobbing mid-air, swooping six metres up and six metres down in rhythm to imaginary waves. The artist who had the idea to hang it there, Julius von Bismarck, has connected an automated pulley system via sensors to a real buoy in the Atlantic Ocean, mirroring its movements.

Usually, the waves crashing over the heads of visitors to these halls are made of sound, pumped out of a custom-built PA that many dance music connoisseurs consider the finest in the world: this is Berghain, Berlin’s mythical temple of bassy industrial techno.

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The Guardian

Sep 07 2020
Stone the crows! The strangest shots from the Vevey festival - in pictures

Luxury bomb bunkers! Exploding pastries! Visitors to Switzerland’s free open-air photography festival should expect the unexpected ...

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The New York Times

Sep 07 2020
While Berghain Is Closed, There’s Art on the Dance Floor
While Berghain Is Closed, There’s Art on the Dance Floor
The famous Berlin techno club has been repurposed as an exhibition space during the pandemic. It’s a mixing of club culture and visual art reminiscent of the golden days of the 1990s.
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artforum.com

Sep 07 2020
Ryan Gander
Ryan Gander will open Lisson Gallery’s new space in New York with an exhibition highlighting time as the new currency, reflecting on how—in an age of identity politics, selfie culture, and an incessant
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artforum.com

Sep 07 2020
Michael Schmidt
Michael Schmidt (1945–2014) occupies a unique position in contemporary German photography and internationally. Born in Berlin and with no formal training in photography, he discovered the medium as a
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artforum.com

Sep 07 2020
Sean Scully
The Waldfrieden Sculpture Park in Wuppertal is delighted to present an exhibition by the Irish artist Sean Scully. Renowned for his abstract paintings with horizontal and vertical stripes, Scully
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artforum.com

Sep 07 2020
John Burke
Who wouldn’t love a sculpture called Medieval Gin Party? A diminutive form in patinated iron, it dates from 1977 and exhibits the balanced brilliance that is a hallmark of John Burke’s work. Three
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The Guardian

Sep 07 2020
On the frontline against Covid-19 in Ethiopia – a photo essay

Yonas Tadesse is an Ethiopian photographer based in Addis Ababa who has been documenting doctors and emergency workers fighting coronavirus since the beginning of the outbreak. This series focuses on the taskforce at the Eka Kotebe hospital in Addis Ababa

The first case of Covid-19 in Ethiopia was reported on 13 March, when a team of first responders took in a 48-year-old Japanese man. Having never seen anything like his condition, they did not know what to prepare for, and thus started their new normal of battling the coronavirus in Ethiopia.

Doctors, nurses, janitors, security guards and drivers donned hats they had never dreamed of wearing as they worked to develop systems and techniques to minimise the damage from the virus – often at the cost of their health, their home lives, their reputations, and sometimes their lives.

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The Guardian

Sep 07 2020
From CND to Hollywood: the ruthlessly brilliant designs of Ken Garland

The graphic designer who decried consumerism with a call-to-arms manifesto has won a lifetime achievement award. He talks about his career highs – and why so much modern design is ‘utterly mindless’

In November 1963, dressed in an afghan sheepskin waistcoat and exuding his characteristic theatrical verve, Ken Garland stormed to the front of a meeting of the Society of Industrial Artists with a fiery message for his colleagues. He was sick of graphic designers wasting their talents on selling cat food, toothpaste, cigarettes and slimming powder. This visual incontinence had reached “a saturation point” he declared, adding that “the high-pitched scream of consumer selling is no more than sheer noise”. Designers, he implored, had a duty to devote their energies to more worthwhile ends.

His impromptu speech was met with rapturous applause and later published as the First Things First manifesto, a call to arms that would cement Garland as the moral conscience of graphic design for decades to come. “We are proposing a reversal of priorities,” stated the manifesto, which had 22 signatories. “We hope that our society will tire of gimmick merchants, status salesmen and hidden persuaders.” The few short paragraphs, published in the Guardian at the time, took on a life of their own, becoming a touchstone for successive generations of designers.

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The New York Times

Sep 07 2020
A Nostalgic (if Isolating) Road Trip Along Route 66
Driven by an early fascination with the American West, a photographer set off to travel part of America’s most celebrated highway.
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The Guardian

Sep 06 2020
The Lives of Lucian Freud: Fame 1968-2011 by William Feaver – review

The second volume of Feaver’s compelling biography reveals the ruthlessness behind the artist’s brilliance

When the second volume of William Feaver’s fat and extremely juicy biography of Lucian Freud begins, the artist is middle-aged: not far off 50, and still shinning up his lovers’ drainpipes (in this case, Jacquetta Eliot, the Countess of St Germans, with whom he’ll have a son, Freddy). But even as the shenanigans continue (and they will endure even into his final years – as a sick, old man, his sexual pride induces him to tell his assistant David Dawson that the blood on his sheets, the result of one of his nosebleeds, “might be a girl’s”) the reader detects a certain change in atmosphere. This has to do not only with Freud’s growing success – in 1974, there will be a retrospective of his work at the Hayward Gallery; his prices will shortly rise dramatically – but with his ambition. “How far can you go?” he would sometimes murmur to himself, looking at a painting that was almost complete. The answer was: much further. Ahead of him lie another 40 years in the studio.

Feaver’s narrative, peppy and mostly nimble, is based in part on the near daily phone calls and many encounters the two men had over several decades (as the artist RB Kitaj once told him, not entirely accurately, he played Boswell to Freud’s Johnson). What’s good about this is that you can hear Freud’s voice on the page, which is thrilling when he’s talking about art (“You feel he’s telling lies,” he says of Caravaggio, getting straight to the heart of the matter). What’s bad about this is that, as Dawson notes: “What he [Freud] says and how he feels are not the same thing. Ever.” Their somewhat symbiotic relationship also means that Feaver is apt to accept Freud’s disdain for interpretation, whether of art or human nature. Early on, a bit comically, he asks the artist if Naked Man With Rat (1977-8) relates to Notes Upon a Case of Obsessional Neurosis by his grandfather, Sigmund Freud – an essay about a young man “tortured by rats or the thought of rats, viz the anal erotic source”. But, no. His model just happened to like the rat. After this, he resists the temptation to indulge in what Freud called “the dodgy therapeutic aspect” of connecting life and work.

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