“I was offered a knighthood but turned it down. My younger brother has one of those. That’s all that needs to be said on the matter”
Can there have been a more astonishing career than that of Lucian Freud, who had several large families (reputedly 40 children in all) by various wives and mistresses and whose paintings sold not just for millions but tens of millions. He never set out to flatter, whether he was painting the Queen or one of his daughters and he had a notoriously bad relationship with his brother Clement. Because his portraits and nudes are so sensational it isn’t generally known that he also painted landscapes and garden plants. He often painted the buddleia and bamboo from his overgrown garden in Notting Hill. Jeffrey Bernard remarked “He has cracked the nut of how to live a double life”. That comment, which was made about his private life (and none was more private) could equally apply to his life as a painter.