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From Cephalus and Aurora by Poussin no.3



Leon Kossoff


10 Dec 1926 – 04 Jul 2019

  • Details

    Media category
    Materials used
    oil on board
    93.0 x 129.0 cm board; 107.0 x 143.2 x 9.4 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Mervyn Horton Bequest Fund 1984
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Estate of Leon Kossoff

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Leon Kossoff

    Works in the collection


  • About

    A leading figure of the so called School of London, Leon Kossoff's London subjects commonly show building sites, street scenes, under-and-over-ground railway stations, their tracks and trains. His paintings and charcoal drawings combine observation, memory, a strong emotional response as well as the properties of his material's physicality.
    Kossoff's rough and ready style had been frowned upon at the various art schools he had attended before enrolling at the Borough Polytechnic (1949-53) where he received great encouragement from his teacher, David Bomberg.
    Kossoff's paintings are extremely thickly impastoed and the drawings corresponding to them also show a dogged application and the sustained assault of the drawing materials.
    While his preferred subject is the life of London - the city that has always been his home - Kossoff draws from a range of subjects including nude models and members of his immediate family as well as the works of the great masters of the past.
    Kossoff's subject here is 'Cephalus and Aurora', c1630, by Nicholas Poussin, in the National Gallery, London. It shows Aurora, goddess of dawn, in love with the mortal Cephalus, together in a story that ends tragically.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 6 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 8 publications

Other works by Leon Kossoff

See all 10 works