Louis le Brocquy 1916 - 2012

Detail from photograph of Louis le Brocquy at the unveiling of his painting 'Image of Bono' at the National Gallery of Ireland, 2003

Louis le Brocquy (1916-2012)

The recently deceased artist is warmly remembered by the entire arts world for his gentle and warm nature, as well as pioneering some of the most memorable renditions of portrait painting ever known. Largely self-taught, Louis le Brocquy studied in France and Spain and began painting in a cubist style. Much of his subjects focused on depictions of alienated sections of society. His seminal painting continued this theme, depicting the travelling community in A Family. This work represented Ireland at the Venice Biennale, winning the Premio Acquisito Internationale in 1956. Also during this decade he produced strikingly colourful tapestries. During the 1960s and onwards his work was characterised by themes of individual isolation in his ‘white period’ with a series of atomised ‘Heads’ of literary figures and fellow artists. He remains one of the most sought after Irish artists on international markets and his work is represented in numerous public collections all over the world. He is also renowned for his book illustrations (such as The Tain by Thomas Kinsella) and as a designer of tapestries, one of which hangs in the Gallery's Millennium Wing.