Cecil Court is a road that links St Martin’s Lane and Charing Cross Road, comprised mainly of second hand bookshops, and described as a ‘London Refuge’ by Kitaj. He paints himself lying on a sofa in the street, while figures from his life appear behind him, painted in the manner of the Yiddish theatre troupes as described to him by his own refugee grandmother.
Cecil Court London, W.C.2. (The Refugees)
All Too Human: Bacon, Freud and a Century of Painting Life
Ronald Brooks Kitaj (1932 – 2007) was an American artist, whose work had a profound influence on British Pop Art, and whose drawing skills were comparable with Degas. Alongside serving in the Merchant Navy and in the United States Army, Kitaj studied art in Vienna, New York City, Oxford and London. At the Royal College of Art, Kitaj studied alongside many prominent artists of the 1960s, with David Hockney remaining a life-long friend. The keys themes of his later work were alienation, his Jewish heritage, and the effect of his wife’s death.