Some Thoughts About Retrospectives
I love art and enjoy the time I spend looking at it.
Just recently a retrospective of Lucian Freud’s work (1922 - 2011) featuring 130 paintings has finished at National Portrait Gallery. I don’t feel like writing about the exhibition itself, as it was extremely professional and well curated and no doubts Lucian Freud was an exceptional artist.
I do like the idea of retrospective: ability to see the development of artist, the techniques he uses in his work, different periods and fascination with genres, models etc. Indeed it’s
a really good way to see the most famous and recognized works in one place and in one go.
Sadly, I have noticed that I don’t enjoy them as much as smaller exhibitions. Maybe the reason is simply in my laziness and inability to stay concentrated for long. For example, it took me 55 min to have a glimpse ( and under that I mean spending no more than 5-10 seconds in front of the painting) on 130 works displayed in X rooms.
At the beginning I was so fascinated with the paintings and tried to analyze the way Lucian Freud’s painting manner have changed. Somewhere in the VII or VIII room I’ve realized that I am no more as fascinated as I was at the start and I just look at those amazing paintings like on any other visual image, and that upset me.
I really enjoyed the show but now I know in order to really enjoy the retrospective you need to attend the show more than once and spend a fortune on tickets :)