Customer Reviews


25 Reviews
5 star:
 (24)
4 star:
 (1)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 
‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extraodinarily Good, 17 Aug. 2012
By 
R de Bulat (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As with other reviewers, I agree that this is a very good book; simply as a book to read - sort of biographical, as research or insight into the work of a great artist. It is, actually, something of a double portrait, with a remarkable exposition of the thoughts and workings of Lucien Freud and the engagement of his sitter, Martin Gayford, the writer of the book. Conversations with Lucien Freud about his long life and experiences, his views on art, Life, food and the extensive list of artists he knows and has known, is interesting and instructive; the book never flags or ceases to be interesting. Underlying all of this is the subject of painted portraiture, something that is beginning to re-emerge from long obscurity during the century of modernism and post modernism and the last remaining outpost of difficult art that is done by artists. Freud, himself states that he enters every painting not knowing where it will lead, if it will be successful. In this respect, the book is the best disquisition I have read on the subject and nailing, once an for all, the idea that portraiture is about verisimimilute of likeness as about character and quality of the painting. Picasso once remarked that in a hundred years no-one will care if a portrait looked like the person - as in this case, a good painting that bears a resemblance to the sitter without being a photographic likeness. Freud's sittings take place over months or even years as the painter and sitter develop a relationship with one another that forms a sort of intimacy helping the portrait to develop and grow, if you like, into a character of its own: Freud insists that the subject is just the starting point. Anyone interested in portraiture and, indeed, Freud's work, will find this book fascinating - even "unputdownable," absolutely 5 stars.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A singularly perceptive piece of life writing, 23 Jun. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
After reading the first third of this captivating book in one sitting in a café, I noticed, on walking out, that even in just a glimpse, I felt like I was seeing individual human faces and their expressions in new ways. Such is the sensitivity of Martin Gayford's own written portrait of Freud (for whom Gayford sat), and the eloquence of their conversations about painting and the living body as presented here.

Like Oscar Wilde, Virginia Woolf or Miles Davis in their own different ways, Lucian Freud seems to have possessed a personality that guarantees engaging writing from others, whatever the quality or context. As it is though, this is a beautifully written work in its own right. The rooms in which Freud painted, and the changing light and shade within these, are evoked with vivid atmosphere, yet are never overly detailed. As the seasons progress along with the painting (with some uncertain, occasionally frustrating moments in the latter's emergence discussed), the contact between the sitter and the artist develops quite movingly.

Gayford creates a compelling sense of what it was like to be in Freud's company, and, through the artist's own comments as recalled in the narrative, the book is richly, if fragmentarily, informative about an extraordinarily eventful life. Gayford appears utterly respectful and discrete. It would have been intriguing to have read more about what others might have told or asked Gayford about the enigmatic Freud, but it's a tribute to the author's integrity that the focus is entirely on the two men's own interactions.

I finished the book in a day or so, several months ago, but continue to enjoy reopening it at random. Inevitably, this is likely to be an important book for anyone interested in Freud and indeed in painting, but I can confidently imagine it being a pleasure to read for people who (like myself) have read relatively little about painting and painters.(It could make an excellent present).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 6 May 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a wonderful brief insight into the world of a hugely successful, professional artist. I would have liked to carry on reading after it finished...only gripe is I would have liked photos of the portrait in it's different stages to see how it grew.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and engaging - wonderful!, 6 April 2012
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I ordered this on a bit of a whim after seeing the book in the Royal Academy gift shop (after seeing the Hockney exhibition - another of Martin Gayford's favourite artists), based solely on the lovely cover. It has completely engaged me for the last two days solid - the true definition of 'un-put-down-able' if ever a book was. Gayford's writing is beautiful and easy to read, offering an engaging and often humorous insight into Freud's work, methods and personality, with some fascinating conversations about the history of art and other great artists thrown in for good measure. There was not a paragraph wasted, with each insight revealing another of Freud's quirks, or thoughts, or a piece of art history that only an historian like Gayford could put forward. I learnt a lot, smiled often, laughed out loud on occasion and fell in love with Freud all over again. Highly recommended!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars read it today, 3 July 2013
A fascinating book giving insights into the minds of both sitter and artist. It was a comprehensive guide into how Freud painted and worked on a day to day basis.I would highly recommend you reading it as soon as possible if you are interested in the artistic process.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating and enjoyable read, 28 Sept. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Man with a Blue Scarf: On Sitting for a Portrait by Lucian Freud (Kindle Edition)
A fascinating insight into the life of Lucien Freud, told as a diary of sittings for a portrait. This is much more than a history of the sittings and conversations as it goes off into many side alleys of topics and discussions about contemporary and historical artists. Freud's opinions on some of the great artists are illuminating and often controversial. Gayford's tremendous depth of knowledge gives the book a huge range of interest, with ease and a self deprecating wit that keeps one enthralled and entertained. It is a tour de force and the most insightful, easy and joyous art history lesson that you could ever want. I will read it again and again.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, 8 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The book arrived quickly. I love the book beautifully produced and arrived in excellent condition. To have plenty of pictures illustrating the text is a major plus.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 1 July 2013
By 
Dr. Chris Carter "cjc" (St.Andrews, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Superb insight into the biography, mind & practice of a legendary artist. Fascinating comments on variety of non-art topics included.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars The Man with the Blue Scarf, 19 Jun. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I really loved this book, which describes the author's experiences when having his portrait made by Lucian Freud. Along with lots of information about LF's life and how he actually makes his portraits, it reveals the author's own views of the world of art and artists. I would recommend this book to anybody interested in the processes of art.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Great insight in Freud, 13 Jun. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Loved reading this...pace is good and it's an interesting insight into the mastery of Lucian Freud with snippets of his 'personality'. I really felt I was there, in the same room. Very well written and subsequently went out and borrowed from library his book on David Hockney. Lovely book to keep too.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews