An image of Portrait of Lucie Beynis

Grace Crowley

(Australia 28 May 1890 – 21 Apr 1979)

Portrait of Lucie Beynis

Other titles:
Not on display
Further information

Completed on the eve of her return to Sydney following four years of study in France, 'Portrait of Lucie Beynis' depicts a professional model whom Crowley painted over a period of four mornings whilst attending L'Academie Lhote in Paris.

Crowley recounted, 'we were united in one belief, the constructive approach to painting, and this insistence of the abstract elements in building up a design was the keynote of teaching with Lhote and Gleizes ... we were discouraged from making merely a faithful record of the nude [model] ... the abstract elements in line, shape and colour were introduced in order to induce the student to construct from it a design within a given space'.

Lhote's modified version of Cubism was one in which the human figure is retained, held within a field of dissecting geometric planes and shafts of colour running through the body. This approach dominated Crowley's semi-abstract paintings during the thirties, until her departure into pure abstraction in the 1940s.

Place of origin
Paris, France
oil on canvas on hardboard
79.7 x 64.5 cm stretcher; 92.4 x 77.2 x 3.4 cm frame
Signature & date

Signed l.r. corner, (pencil?) "GRACE CROWLEY [faint]". Not dated.

Purchased 1965
Accession number
© Reproduced with permission of Grace Crowley Estate