complete bastard, damn good portrait painter


The British painter, critic, and novelist Wyndham Lewis was a monster of intolerance – yet Walter Sickert once called him “the greatest portraitist of this, or any other time”. What is more, an exhibition of Lewis’s portraits at the National Portrait Gallery reveals that Sickert was very nearly right.

I dislike everything about Lewis, and, if you want to know why, all you have to do is glance at his famous self-portrait Mr Wyndham Lewis as a Tyro (1920-21). In it the artist looks out at us with an expression somewhere between a sneer and a snarl.

Curling his upper lip to bare his teeth, he swivels his hard and suspicious eyes round to fix us with an angry glare. The face is made up of flat planes and sharp angles. The points of the chin, cheek and nose look like knives.

more from The Telegraph here.