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Dublin: 8°C Thursday 21 October 2021

Irish artist Louis le Brocquy dies at 95

President Michael D Higgins leads tributes to one of Ireland’s most celebrated artists, who has died in Dublin aged 95.

Louis le Brocquy, 1916-2012.
Louis le Brocquy, 1916-2012.
Image: Photocall Ireland

PRESIDENT MICHAEL D HIGGINS has led tributes to celebrated Irish artist Louis le Brocquy, who died today at the age of 95.

Le Brocquy was recently featured on RTE’s ‘Masterpiece: Ireland’s favourite painting’ series for ‘A Family’ (1951), perhaps his best-known work, which is housed in the National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin.

Until his passing le Brocquy held the distinction of being the only living Irish painter to have work displayed in the permanent gallery.

He is also renowned for his prints of The Tain and his portraits of famous Irish characters such as W B Yeats, James Joyce, Bono and Samuel Beckett.

In later years he was one of the founding members of the Irish Museum of Modern Art. His works are also present in museums worldwide including the Tate Modern in London and the Guggenheim Museum in New York.

Speaking on RTE Radio 1, Higgins described le Brocquy as “probably the foremost Irish painter of the 20th century”.

His reputation is international, and he was regarded as somebody who had made a contribution of a genius in his long life in the arts, of nearly 70 years.

“I think at home here in Ireland we’re very grateful to him because of his recognition of the importance of the public world,” Higgins added, thanking him for his great services to the “citizenship of Ireland”.

“His work will continue to live on, I think… The work will continue to do all the philosophical work for him in the decades after his passing.”

It is understood that le Brocquy had been ill for some time. He is survived by his wife Anne Madden le Brocquy and his two sons, Pierre and Alexis.

Arts minister Jimmy Deenihan expressed his sympathies with le Brocquy’s family on his passing.

The death of a loved one, is always especially sad for those close to them and for Anne Madden the loss of Louis will no doubt create a great vacuum in her life,” Deenihan said.

“I hope that the wonderful legacy of his paintings, with his truly original approach to art, will provide some solace to her in the days ahead.”

Additional reporting by Gavan Reilly

(Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland)

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