Breakfast with Lucian

  • by Geordie Greig
  • Narrated by John Standing
  • 8 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

For 10 years Geordie Greig was among a very small group of friends who regularly met Lucian Freud for breakfast at Clarke's restaurant on Kensington Church Street. Over tea and the morning papers, Freud would recount stories of his past and discuss art. It was, in effect, Freud's private salon.
In this kaleidoscopic memoir, Greig remembers Freud's stories: of death threats; escaping from Nazi Germany; falling out with his brother Clement; loathing his mother; painting David Hockney; sleeping with horses; escaping the Krays; painting the Queen; his controversial role as a father; and why Velázquez was the greatest painter. It is revelatory about his art, his lovers, his children, his enemies, and his love of gambling.
Freud dared never to do dull, speaking candidly of dancing with Garbo as well as painting Kate Moss naked. Those closest to him, after decades of silence and secrecy, have spoken frankly about what life was like living, loving or sitting for the greatest figurative portraitist of the twentieth century. Partly based on hours of taped conversations with the artist and his circle, and drawing on interviews with those who knew Freud intimately - including many girlfriends, models, dealers and bookmakers - Breakfast with Lucian is an intimate portrait of the artist as a young and old man. It is a uniquely fascinating, personal and authoritative account of one of the greatest British painters of this century and the last, and a profile of a man who makes everyone else's life seem less lived.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Indulgent but fascinating

Lots of fascinating details about one of the world's most accomplished portrait painters. We learn of Lucien Freud's relationship with his grandfather Sigmund and with his wide range of sexual partners, marriage partners, children, friends, other painters and gallery owners, and a whole lot more. While Geordie Greig tells an interesting story he also indulges us with more than we care to know about his own relationships, name-dropping and perspectives, and there is a risk of hagiography despite Lucien Freud's arrogance, hedonism, bullying, and ambiguous and contemporaneous love of women and misogyny.

Insights regarding the development of his painting style, what was entailed in sitting for him, and the range of models and family members painted are fascinating.

An important and valuable set of insights into one of the 20th Century's greatest artists. Would be great to have the artwork in front of one as one heard the background, context, description and critique. Something for Audible to work on?
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- Anthony

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-10-2013
  • Publisher: Random House Audiobooks