Seated Figure with Arms Raised

Auerbach, Frank
Frank Auerbach was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany. In 1939, as a refugee from Nazi Germany, he attended Bunce Court Boarding School near Faversham, Kent, where he was seen as an artistic prodigy. Before beginning at St Martin's School of Art and Design in London, Auerbach attended classes taught by David Bomberg at the Borough Polytechnic Institute. This experience was to shape Auerbach's artistic practice as he admired Bomberg's exploratory style of painting. Between 1952 and 1955 he studied at the Royal College of Art, during which time he moved into the Camden Town studio. 'Seated Figure with Arms Raised', 1975 is from a series of five oil paintings done between 1972 and 1974. They are of the same model who sat for Auerbach two to three times a week. Auerbach's approach of giving shape to an observed reality is, according to the poet Stephen Spender, a painting which 'is representation intensified to vision… the actual physical appearance of the subject is only the starting point for the discovery of a likeness which is unlike the superficial image on the surface of the retina.' Felice McDowell
  • Artwork Details: 51 x 51cm
  • Edition:
  • Material description: oil on board
  • Credit line: © the artist
  • Theme: Figurative
  • Medium: Painting
  • Accession number: ACC3/1975



The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.