Farewell: Louis le Brocquy 1916-2012

Condolences on the death of Louis le Brocquy Louis, a member of  IVARO since 2006, he was one of Ireland’s most renowned painters.

“CHILD WITH FLOWERS” (c. 1954) Well, these pieces by the now deceased Irish painter Louis le Brocquy are mid-century rather than MoCo, but there are times when we just have to throw caution to the wind and simply enjoy the gorgeousness.

By all accounts, the figure of a child holding flowers was a recurrent motif in le Brocquy’s work of the early 1950s – his so- called Grey Period. That idea. I’m thinking out loud may have come from Picasso’s Blue Period. I can’t help but notice that the face is round. The hair is round and the belly is round. The eyes are round. The ears are round. I like the way the neck is both shadowed and unshadowed to coincide with the light and dark shadows against the backdrop. The child is mesmerised with the simple Spring flowers. The hands out-streched reminds me of a religious painting.

In paintings such as A Family (NGI), Two Rooms and Indoors, Outdoors, all painted in 1951, the child is depicted in profile, but by 1953 his figures are shown squarely head on, confronting the viewer.

The most obvious comparison is the open- mouthed child clasping two bunches of wildflowers in Child in a Spring Field of 1954, and it is on this basis that the etching can with reasonable certainty be dated likewise. Child With Flowers and Child in a Field are from le Brocquy’s Grey Period. I notice in a lot of the paintings that he uses squares and triangular shapes. See: grey/light ones to each side of the top part. I see too that the child is clasping on to the flowers. In the painting of the family he has the man clasping on to the sheet?

In a statement, President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins paid tribute to the artist.

“Louis le Brocquy’s pioneering approach to art, influenced by the European masters, was highly inspirational,” he said.

“His works including the Tinker Paintings broke new ground and opened dialogue around the human condition and suffering. Through painting, tapestry and print Louis le Brocquy has provided us with individual works and collections that give the insight and response of an artist of genius to Irish history, culture and society.”

Our siincere condolences to his wife Anne, their sons Pierre and Alexis and their friends and families.

Louis le Brocquy’s life and works: official website

News: Louis le Brocquy dies aged 95


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