James Gill emerged as a phenomenon in the Los Angeles art scene of the early 1960s, where he drew a following from members of the Hollywood community as well as the attention of established patrons of the East Coast art world. The use of bright colors and serial imagery drawn often from celebrity culture and the news media prompted many to define Gill as a Pop artist, yet his blurred painterly technique also won him comparisons to Francis Bacon. In 1972, still at the height of fame, Gill retreated from the public eye, eventually returning to his native town of San Angelo, Texas.
Los Angeles Modern Auctions is pleased to present After Chardin (2000), a small but powerful etching that provides rare insight into Lucian Freud’s working methods and deep passion for depicting human physiognomy. The British painter admired 18th century French old master painter Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin’s sensitive handling of a genre scene, especially in what Freud called “the most beautiful ear in art,” and created this etching as a means of connecting with the French old master painter. The etching was gifted directly to the consignor by MOCA, and comes together with print documentation and a letter of appreciation from the museum.