Lucian Freud exhibition comes to National Portrait Gallery

A major exhibition of paintings by Lucian Freud comes to the National Portrait Gallery in London in February.

Lucian Freud Portraits opens on Thursday February 9th and lasts until Tuesday May 27th, giving art lovers the chance to admire the acclaimed artist’s unique talent.

Art lovers staying in luxury hotel rooms in London will have the opportunity to see more than 100 portraits which are created in a realistic artistic style.

The works on display span seven decades starting from the early 1940s to Freud’s death in July 2011 at the age of 88.

Among the portraits that will be on show include representations of the artist’s mother Lucie, painters French Auerbach, Francis Bacon and David Hockney, performance artist Leigh Bowery, Bowery’s friend Sue Tilley, Freud’s assistant David Dawson and brigadier Andrew Parker Bowles.

The Lucian Freud Portraits exhibition has been described as the most ambitious Freud exhibition for ten years and forms part of the London 2012 Festival – the culmination of the Cultural Olympiad.

Freud, the grandson of the famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, was born in Berlin in 1922 to an Austrian Jewish father and a German Jewish mother. He moved with his family to St John’s Wood in London in 1933 to escape the rising influence of the Nazis and became a British citizen in 1939.

The artist was educated at the Central School of Art in London, Cedric Morris’ East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing in Dedham and Goldsmiths, University of London between 1942 and 1943.

Freud’s early paintings made use of a surrealist style, depicting people, animals and plants in unusual positions and juxtapositions. From the 1950s onwards, Freud began to work in portraiture using muted colours and the impasto technique.

Many of Freud’s portraits depict nudes, sometimes with the naked sitter sprawled across the floor.

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