Keith Critchlow met Kossoff when they studied together at St Martin’s and the Royal College of Art in the 1950s, and they remained life-long friends. It was Critchlow who also encouraged Frank Bowling to take up painting, after meeting him on national service in the RAF and inviting him to live with his family. Critchlow was a talented artist in his own right but chose to pursue a career in academia, becoming a professor of art and architecture, a highly respected author and an expert in sacred geometry. Critchlow also owned Head of Frank Auerbach, 1956, by Leon Kossoff, which is being offered in the Modern British Art Evening Sale on 1 March, Lot 1.
Kossoff painted six oil paintings of this subject. The present work closely resembles the compositions of Children's Swimming Pool, Autumn Afternoon, 1971 (Tate, London), and Children's Swimming Pool, Autumn, 1972 (Arts Council Collection, London).
We are very grateful to Andrea Rose for her assistance in preparing this catalogue entry. Andrea Rose is the editor of the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the oil paintings of Leon Kossoff due to be published by Modern Art Press in 2021.