Career Spanning Some Seventy Years

Louis Le Brocquy was an Irish painter born in Dublin in 1916 and his career spanned some seventy years until his death in 2012. Le Brocquy was a self-taught painter who studied the works of the Old Masters such as Velázquez and Goya and his earlier works prove his artistic ability to paint in the academic tradition of these Old Masters. From 1939 Le Brocquy’s practice shifted towards a more deeper, psychological exploration of the human condition. By utilising the human figure itself, isolating it and abstracting it, he conveyed themes of human isolation within contemporary society.

View ‘Human Image’ within the Collection

Human Image by Louis Le Brocquy

Human Image by Louis Le Brocquy

One of the Most Prominent Painters in Irish Modern Art

Le Brocquy is widely acclaimed as one of the most prominent painters in Irish modern art, achieving critical acclaim for his unique approach to portraiture, focusing solely on the head he re-imagined the possibilities and overcame limitations of the genre. Within these portraits Le Brocquy wished to capture not only the person’s physical presence but also their spiritual complexity and shared past.

“Enter that box, enter behind the billowing curtain of the face and you have the whole landscape of the spirit”.

– Louis Le Brocquy

His work received many accolades in his career and in 1956, he represented Ireland at the Venice Biennale. The artist’s work is represented in numerous public collections from the Guggenheim, New York to the Tate Modern, London. In Ireland, he is the first and only living painter to be included during his lifetime in the Permanent Irish Collection of the National Gallery of Ireland.

Museum & State Collections

  • Albright Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, U.S.A.
  • Arts Club of Chicago, U.S.A.
  • Arts Council /An Chomhairle Ealaíon, Ireland
  • Arts Council, Hayward Gallery, Londo, U.K.
  • Arts Council of Northern Ireland, N. Ireland
  • Butler Gallery, Kilkenny, Ireland
  • British Council, U.K.
  • Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal
  • Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, U.S.A.
  • Centre de la Gravure de La Louvière, Belgium
  • Centre National d’Art Contemporain, Paris, France
  • City Art Gallery, Waterford, Ireland
  • City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima, Japan
  • Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio, U.S.A.
  • Contemporary Art Society, London, U.K.
  • Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. U.S.A.
  • Council House, Wisconsin, U.S.A.
  • Crawford Municipal Art Gallery, Cork, Ireland
  • Department of Foreign Affairs, Dublin, Ireland
  • Detroit Institute of Art, Michigan, U.S.A.
  • Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane, Ireland
  • Dublin City University (DCU), Ireland
  • Dundee Contemporary Arts – DCA, Scotland
  • Etat Français, Création Artistique, France
  • Ferrens Art Gallery, Kingston upon Hull, U.K.
  • Flint Institute of Arts, Michigan, U.S.A.
  • Fondation Maeght, St Paul, France
  • Fondation Van Gogh, Arles, France
  • Fort Worth Center, Texas, U.S.A.
  • Fred Jones Museum of Art, University of Oklahom, U.S.A.
  • French Institute London, U.K.
  • Glebe Gallery, Co Donegal, Ireland
  • Graves Art Gallery, Sheffield, U.K.
  • Guggenheim Museum, New York, U.S.A.
  • Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C., U.S.A.
  • Ho-Am Museum, Seoul, Korea
  • Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, Ireland
  • Itami City Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan
  • James Joyce Foundation, Zurich, Switzerland
  • Kunsthaus, Zurich, Switzerland
  • Leeds City Art Gallery, U.K.
  • Model Arts and Niland Gallery,  Sligo, Ireland
  • Moravian Gallery, Brno, Czech Republic
  • Municipal Gallery, Darlington, U.K.
  • Municipal Gallery, Swindon, U.K.
  • Musée Cantini, Marseille, France
  • Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, France
  • Musée de Nantes, France
  • Musée Picasso, Antibes, France
  • Museu de Arte Moderna – MAM. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
  • Museum of Modern Art, Kamakura, Japan
  • National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi, India
  • National Gallery of Ireland, Ireland
  • National Museum of Ireland, Ireland
  • National Self-Portrait Collection, Limerick, Ireland
  • Nelson Art Gallery, New Zealand
  • New York State Museum, U.S.A.
  • Office of Public Works, Dublin, Ireland
  • Pembroke College, Oxford, U.K.
  • Queen’s University, Belfast, U.K.
  • Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, U.K.
  • San Diego Museum of Art, U.S.A.
  • Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago, U.S.A.
  • Tate, London, U.K.
  • Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland
  • Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy
  • Ulster Museum, Belfast , N. Ireland
  • University College Cork (UCC), Ireland
  • University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland
  • University of California, Berkeley Art Museum, U.S.A.
  • University of Limerick, Ireland
  • University of Warwick, U.K.
  • Vancouver Art Gallery, Canada
  • Vatican Museums, Rome, Italy
  • Victoria and Albert Museum, London, U.K.
  • Ville de Caen, Artothèque, France
  • Waterford Municipal Art Collection, Ireland

Official website with biographical details and texts discussing his artistic career:

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