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GavinJones

Freud

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Yes, I think it does. I am happy enough with the way Freud expresses the volumes and textures of human flesh; I just think he fucked the bed up. And I swear Ingres has fucked up that poor girl's arm. It's four feet long and grows out of her rib cage.

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OK, I've never expressed this 'aloud' before, but it has always been a total mystery to me that Van Gogh is considered a 'serious' painter. Clearly a blind spot of mine :huh:

 

v

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And I swear Ingres has fucked up that poor girl's arm.

I like to think that his assistant did it.

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I found a page with some examples of what I'm getting at with Freud.

 

In the double portrait (woman and dog), why is the dog not reclining on the same plane as the woman (I think it's a woman)?  In the naked portrait with green chair, try to follow the lines of the mattress under the sheet - is the bed bent?  And I think the Leigh Bowery seated picture is the one where the chair's relationship to the floor bothers me, but it's hard to tell from the online image.

 

Maybe it's just me, but these considerations distract me from his obvious painterly virtues.

My impression is that Freud's plays with perspective and foreshortening (?) are deliberate. I say this because at the John Curran (I still maintain he's third rate, if that) show at the Whitney recently, Curran was up to the same thing. I don't think Freud was mentioned as an influence, but there are similarities. Isn't it related to discombobulating the viewer? I'm quite intrigued by Freud's work but it turns my stomach; humans as raw meat.

 

As for Ingres (one of my favorite artists), that woman's arm, that's a mistake. (I hope)

 

Vanessa, I've never been a fan of Van Gogh either, but his Irises (at the NY Met, I believe) is very nice

http://www.artunframed.com/images/samples8/irises.jpg

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That's very fair Robert: the distinction I'd like to make, and I have no idea how, is between:

 

- the distortion of everyday objects or human figures to a purpose - extreme in Cubism and some so-called "Futurist" paintings, for instance, and also obvious in figurative artists we've seen in New York recently such as Max Beckman and Giacometti;

 

- the distortion which serves no obvious purpose, and indeed seems to work against what is otherwise the spatial logic of the picture; in other words, distortions which look like mistakes.

 

Now, it may very well be that I am simply wrong in putting the examples I have in mind from Freud and Bonnard in the latter category, but surely the latter category should be recognised.  If we want to take a pre-modernist example, there's a portrait by Ingres which is fabulous in every way except for the impossible articulation of one of the subject's arms.  Let me see if I can link to some examples.

I forgot to mention Bonnard, another of my favorites. I wouldn't put him in the 2nd category. There was a wonderful exhibition of his work at MOMA a few years ago. The distortions and feint figures (some you can hardly see) seemed to suggest the fragility of life. I went with a friend and we were moved in the same way. N=2, huge representative sample. ;)

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Wilfrid is quite right. There is a very disturbing armchair with the arms sliding in several directions. However on the armchair is seated Brigadier Parker-Bowles (quondam husband to the mistress of the Prince of Wales) who appears like the final implosion of empire. His body almost dead underneath formal military dress. His existence is only partially spatial, head suspended, awaiting detonation.

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However on the armchair is seated Brigadier Parker-Bowles (quondam husband to the mistress of the Prince of Wales) who appears like the final implosion of empire. His body almost dead underneath formal military dress. His existence is only partially spatial, head suspended, awaiting detonation.

Don't introduce him to Richard Clarke. His hair is on fire.

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About these internal inconsistencies - and leaving aside examples where the artist seems to have screwed up, but was just too far along to give it up, as in the case of the Ingres - what do you think of the suggestion that they are intentional, growing out of an expressionistic impulse, and meant to cause the reaction some have?

 

Freud is a good technician. It would appear that his internal inconsistencies are consistent. Why would he do that? Is it possible that part of his idea is to produce some kind of imbalance in the viewer's response, to tilt the gyroscope inside the frame a little bit to make the viewer a little woozy, knowing it will nag at the orderly mind and eye?

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About these internal inconsistencies - and leaving aside examples where the artist seems to have screwed up, but was just too far along to give it up, as in the case of the Ingres - what do you think of the suggestion that they are intentional, growing out of an expressionistic impulse, and meant to cause the reaction some have.

 

Freud is a good technician. It would appear that his internal inconsistencies are consistent. Why would he do that? Is it possible that part of his idea is to produce some kind of imbalance in the viewer's response, to tilt the gyroscope inside the frame a little bit to make the viewer a little woozy, knowing it will nag at the orderly mind and eye?

I agree with you Robert on Freud, that is, intentionally unbalancing the viewer. Together with the content it feels sadistic.

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Given his level of expertise as a draftsman and his ability to manipulate oilpaint to approximate flesh, isn't it a bit naive to think that abilities such as these would also limit him from properly delineating limbs or objects in a room?

 

Frankly I think thats thats ridiculous.

 

Artists always have the choice of keeping any particular painting from the public. Jeez, if an artist or for that matter a dealer thought that the depiction of any object or body part was distorted solely because the artist did not have the skill to do it properly doesn't make any sense.

 

Second guessing an artist who is as highly regarded as Freud is silly. OTOH, deciding for oneself if his body of work is truly great or if he has moved the concept of figure painting or any other genre ahead is something open to all of us to ponder.

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Given his level of expertise as a draftsman and his ability to manipulate oilpaint to approximate flesh, isn't it a bit naive to think that abilities such as these would also limit him from properly delineating limbs or objects in a room?

 

Frankly I think thats thats ridiculous.

 

Artists always have the choice of keeping any particular painting from the public. Jeez, if an artist or for that matter a dealer thought that the depiction of any object or body part was distorted solely because the artist did not have the skill to do it properly doesn't make any sense.

 

Second guessing an artist who is as highly regarded as Freud is silly. OTOH, deciding for oneself if his body of work is truly great or if he has moved the concept of figure painting or any other genre ahead is something open to all of us to ponder.

Forgive me,can you help me understand your point. I’m saying because he’s (Freud’s) so good he can manipulate and /or ask the viewer to think again. I think this is good.

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Given his level of expertise as a draftsman and his ability to manipulate oilpaint to approximate flesh, isn't it a bit naive to think that abilities such as these would also limit him from properly delineating limbs or objects in a room?

 

Frankly I think thats thats ridiculous.

 

Artists always have the choice of keeping any particular painting from the public. Jeez, if an artist or for that matter a dealer thought that the depiction of any object or body part was distorted solely because the artist did not have the skill to do it properly doesn't make any sense.

 

Second guessing an artist who is as highly regarded as Freud is silly. OTOH, deciding for oneself if his body of work is truly great or if he has moved the concept of figure painting or any other genre ahead is something open to all of us to ponder.

Forgive me,can you help me understand your point. I’m saying because he’s (Freud’s) so good he can manipulate and /or ask the viewer to think again. I think this is good.

I was quibbling with Wilfrid not with you Yvonne. I agree with your point of view.

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