Two Men In The Studio

Lucian Freud

Two Men In The Studio of 1989 also relates to a painting* of the same name, and perfectly illustrates the complex relationship between the two media. In the painting, this time finished first, another painting in progress Standing By The Rags (now in the Tate Gallery) is visible leaning against the studio wall. When Freud returns to the etching he settles on a different composition in which we find several canvases with their faces turned to the wall, showing their stretchers and pegs. Whether this change was prompted by a desire to vary, or from the fact that Standing By The Rags had by then been physically moved is not recorded. What is certain though, is that Freud’s etchings are no slavish record of related, painted works. The close, deep and rigorously etched lines of Two Men in the Studio do much to provide a complete and cogent sense of the interior scene in a work of this modest scale, and as such it stands in complete contrast to Freud’s next etching Naked Man on a Bed which is larger and completely undecorated. Given that there are only four published etchings of the male nude in Freud’s oeuvre, it is pleasing to see this complete variance in attitude and execution as the artist moves from one year to the next.

*Catherine Lampert, Lucian Freud: recent work, catalogue of exhibition organised by the Whitechapel Art Gallery, 1993

Lucian Freud (1922-2011)
Two Men In the Studio
16 x 14 ¼ in : 40.7 x 36.2 cm (Somerset Satin White)
9 x 8 in : 22.9 x 20.3 cm
From the edition of 25, signed and numbered by the artist
Marc Balakjian at Studio Prints, London
James Kirkman (London) and Brooke Alexander (New York)
Hartley 39; PQ 39; Figura 46
Available for sale

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