Read the Essays

The curators of the exhibition are all students on The Courtauld’s MA Programme Curating the Art Museum. Several have written texts expanding on the exhibition. These ‘spotlight’ essays offer insight to many of the artworks and their creators, addressing themes of artistic inspiration and influence, as well as process and method.

These texts are intended as extensions of the exhibition and aim to provide further information and insightful anecdotes to those who are interested in learning more about the exhibition and the works on display.

 Spotlight on Jonathan Richardson the Elder
Noura Al-Maashouq
Examining the works of Jonathan Richardson the Elder, a prominent portraitist and art theorist in the 18th century.

 Roger Fry: Aligning Himself with the Half Idiot, Half Divine
Sandra Boks
Roger Fry may have revered Paul Cézanne, but his opinion of what it takes to be a great artist is perhaps not what we might expect.

 Sarah Lucas’ Self Portraits 1990-1998
Sascha Feldman and Davida Fernandez-Barkan
Sarah Lucas uses various props to examine her image as an artist. The ways in which she presents herself and her legacy as a feminist artist are discussed here.

Male Bonding: Francis Bacon meets Lucian Freud
Jenny Foot
How a recent discovery by Christie’s Auction House has revealed an intriguing insight into the relationship between Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud.

 Gilbert & George: A Portrait of the Artists as Young Men
George Mogg
Gilbert & George capitalise on the idea of the “solitary artist” – yet, as a pair, they are fundamentally never alone. This spotlight explores how their video A Portrait of the Artists As Young Men fits into the exhibition as well as their career.

 ‘A Specific Kind of Eye’: Richard Hamilton’s Polaroid Portraits
Meredith More
An impromptu snapshot shows the friendship between Richard Hamilton and filmmaker Derek Jarman, created in a series of Polaroid Portraits, and how the particular character of an artist may appear even through a photograph.

 ‘By Different Device: Polaroid Portraits of the Artist As…
Mardee Goff
Two artists in the exhibition, Richard Hamilton and Saul Fletcher, use the medium of Polaroid. Read on to find out why this medium can produce a particularly powerful portrait.

 ‘Interview with Glenn Brown’
Mardee Goff
A conversation between Glenn Brown and Mardee Goff regarding his work Decline and Falland his working methods, recorded at Brown’s studio in East London on 7 June 2012