Heinz Koppel
Portrait of Helen Lessore 1958

Artwork details

Artist
Heinz Koppel 1919–1980
Title
Portrait of Helen Lessore
Date 1958
Medium Oil paint on paper
Dimensions Support: 787 x 484 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by John Lessore 1988
Reference
T05505
Not on display

Display caption

This portrait represents Helen Lessore, who was then the artist's dealer, at The Beaux Arts Gallery, Bruton Place, London. Since 1965 when the gallery closed, Lessore's main activity has been painting. Lessore recalled that she never actually posed for the portrait, and thought Koppel had based it on small sketches of her drawn while they were seated together at dinner. Lessore is depicted wearing an imaginary crown of laurel and long mauve gloves. Koppel has exaggerated the shape of the figure's arms and fingers, and has used non-naturalistic colours. These combined with the expressive handling of the paint, convey a sense of the fantastic mood of the portrait.

September 2004

About this artwork