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Painting Has Its Own Code of Honor

Post #1648 • February 25, 2014, 9:01 AM

An interview with Frank Auerbach, who is the first living artist to be exhibited in the Rijksmuseum’s main collection.

Does Auerbach resent being lumped into the so-called School of London along with Freud, Michael Andrews, Leon Kossoff, Francis Bacon and such affiliates as RB Kitaj? ‘I never wanted to belong to a school. The School of London [idea] was total rubbish,’ he says firmly. ‘But I think they are very good painters and I am not ashamed to be put in the same category as them.’ Most have now died. Does he miss them? ‘As time goes on I feel these people are in the room with me.’ Then he stops for a moment, a rare breath in a long, eloquent train of thought. ‘I actually feel sorry for these dead painters who can no longer take part in this marvellously engaging activity.’

Also, this:

I feel very strongly that if a painting is going to work, it has to work before you have a chance to read it.

And this:

[P]ainting has its own code of honour; it is our battlefield. Unless you try and do something in the shadow of these great people then it’s all pointless.’

Oh, just go read the whole thing.

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