Leeds Art Gallery

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Fidelma No.1

Kossoff, Leon (b. 1926), Not known, Oil on board, 124.5 x 92.7

A British artist, born in Islington, London to Russian Jewish parents, Kossoff studied at St. Martin’s College of Art and Design and the Royal College of Art. After three years of military service in the Royal Fusiliers, attached to the 2<sup><font size="3">nd</font></sup> Battalion Jewish Brigade, Kossoff returned to study at the Borough Polytechnic, where David Bomberg was one of his teachers and Frank Auerbach one of his contemporaries. Both Kossoff and Auerbach employed the use of heavy impasto in their work and Kossoff’s subject matter is largely taken from the area around the East End of London, where he grew up. Frances Spalding writes ‘No other post-war artists come remotely near Auerbach and Leon Kossoff in their portrayal of the shuddering sprawl of London’. (Spalding, F.,<i>British Art</i> <i>Since 1900</i>, Thames & Hudson, London, 1996) The portrait was bought with the aid of a contribution from the LACF in 1990.</span>