Exhibitions

IMMA Collection: Freud Project Gaze

Gaze is the third annual exhibition in the IMMA Collection: Freud Project; a major five-year initiative around fifty-two works by painter Lucian Freud (1922-2011) that have been lent to the museum’s Collection. Gaze continues to actively explore Freud’s practice by positioning his works alongside those of other artists from the IMMA Collection.


Lucian Freud 1922–2011

Lucian Freud (1922-2011) was one of the greatest realist painters of the 20th century. Renowned for his portrayal of the human form, Freud is best known for his intimate, honest, often visceral portraits. Working only from life Freud’s studio was intensely private and he mainly worked with those he was close to, often asking subjects to sit for hundreds of hours over multiple sittings to better capture the essence of their personality.


As the title suggests, this exhibition is concerned with the human gaze; of the artist, the sitter or the viewer of the work. Gaze particularly asks us to examine relationships between the artist and the sitter, and also focuses on the representation of the nude and the oftentimes visceral portrayal of the body in art, particularly in Freud’s work. Unfolding over a series of three floors in the dedicated Freud Centre, the exhibition encourages the visitor to journey from room to room, allowing space for reflection, but always considering who is gazing at whom. At times you are sharing the viewpoint of the sitter, at times the artist, but you are always involved in a constant exchange between all three perspectives in the room; the viewer, artist and sitter.

Showing alongside works by Lucian Freud the exhibition includes work by Marina Abramovic, Stephan Balkenhol, Phil Collins, John Coplans, Dorothy Cross, Pauline Cummins, Albrecht Dürer, Ann Hamilton, Edward Hopper, Rebecca Horn, Annie Leibovitz, Mark Manders, Edward McGuire, Danny Osborne, Rembrandt, Thomas Ruff and Hannah Starkey, all drawn from the IMMA Collection.

IMMA Collection: Freud Project is a major five-year initiative for IMMA, where fifty-two works by painter Lucian Freud (1922-2011) have been lent to the museum’s Collection by private lenders. During this unique project, IMMA will present a series of Freud-related exhibitions each year.

Freud visited Dublin and Connemara in Ireland in the late 1940s, partly on a pilgrimage to Jack B.Yeats whom he considered the greatest living painter and later when married to Caroline Blackwood of the Guinness family. From the 1950s he connected with Irish artists such as Patrick Swift whose Dublin studio he used and Edward McGuire whose tutor he was at the Slade Art School, as well as the literary circle of Patrick Kavanagh, John Montague, Brendan Behan, Anthony Cronin and their Soho milieu. An in depth account of Freud and Ireland will be explored through the Freud Project, including his close links with the other great figurative painter of the 20th century, Irish-born and London-based, Francis Bacon – his friend, mentor and great rival of thirty years and whose studio you can visit in Dublin City Gallery the Hugh Lane.

IMMA has secured a significant five-year loan of 52 works by Lucian Freud . Renowned for his portrayal of the human form, Freud is best known for his intimate, honest, often visceral portraits. Working only from life Freud’s studio was intensely private and he mainly worked with those he was close to, often asking subjects to sit for hundreds of hours over multiple sittings to better capture the essence of their personality.

IMMA Collection: Freud Project features a selection of 30 of the artist’s finest paintings, and 20 works on paper. The works, mainly dating from 1970 onwards, explore several of the artist’s key themes such as Portraiture; Self Portraiture; Still-life; Animals and Nature; works that reflect his interest in the people and the natural world.

The works, on loan from private collections, are predominantly presented in a dedicated Freud Centre in IMMA’s Garden Galleries for five years. With this extraordinary resource IMMA will create a centre for Freud research with a programme of special exhibitions, education partnerships, symposia and research that will maximise this important opportunity for schools, third level students, artists and audiences all over Ireland and beyond.

During this unique five-year project IMMA will present a series of different and exclusive Lucian Freud related exhibitions, with a new programme of events and openings each year, including works and new commissions by other modern and contemporary artists in response to Freud, and will reveal exciting new perspectives on this major artist today

For more information visit https://imma.ie/whats-on/imma-collection-freud-project-gaze/

Tickets can be bought here https://imma.ticketsolve.com/shows/873596853/events/128753309