Chaos to Order

Frank Auerbach’s paintings at Tate Britain show parts of London as no-one sees them any more. His observations began by reorganising the chaos of a bombed-out city after the Second World War.

There is Primrose Hill

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and different building nearby Mornington Crescent

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Comments in the gallery notes point to some of the exhibitions’s’ significance: “Auberbach is a landscape painter, but a peculiar kind. Nature for him seems to be instantaneous. It leaps out of the void.’ (T. J. Clark) And again: The virtue of these building-site paintings of 1952 to 1962 ‘is to capture both the gravity and lightness of an era, when everything was changing. Londoners salvaged beauty from chaos as they moved the city toward recovery.’ (Michael Kimmelman)