Culture / Art Republik

London Calling: Getty Center Exhibition

Getty Center welcomes new exhibition till later this year as part of a collaboration with the Tate London.

Jul 20, 2016 | By Vimi Haridasan

From July 26, the Getty Center in Los Angeles will be showcasing some of the greatest figurative painters the world has seen from the latter half of the 20th century. Titled “London Calling”, it will feature UK-based painters such as Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, Leon Kossoff, Michael Andrews, Frank Auerbach and R.B. Kitaj.

Having been some of the pioneers from the “School of London” in post-war Britain, the artists left a mark in the art world when they rejected more conventional forms in that era. Known for veering away from abstract art and conceptualism when it was popular, these artists will call America home for the duration of the exhibition. The “London Calling” show is a collaborative effort between the Getty Center and the Tate in London to bring artists from both sides of the Atlantic to start a dialogue on the level of influence that the artwork had.

Francis Bacon (named after his famous ancestor) was one of the most successful British painters of the 20th century, evolving from surreal to figurative art over the course of his career. His friend and rival Lucian Freud also preferred figurative art and was known for his heavily impastoed portraits. Frank Auerbach, Michael Andrews and Leon Kossoff were all also known for their use of the impasto technique — thick, textured layers of paint applied to the canvas. Kitaj, an American who spent most of his time in England, had particular influence on the development of the Pop Art movement thanks to his use of color and collage effects.

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