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.


  • Title: Portrait of Lucie Beynis
  • Creator: Grace Crowley
  • Date Created: (1929)
  • Location: Paris/France
  • Physical Dimensions: 79.7 x 64.5 cm stretcher; 92.4 x 77.1 x 3.3 cm frame
  • Provenance: Grace Crowley, pre Jun 1965, New South Wales/Australia
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Purchased 1965
  • External Link: https://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/collection/works/OA14.1965
  • Medium: oil on canvas on hardboard
  • Signature & Date: Signed l.r. corner, (pencil?) "GRACE CROWLEY [faint]". Not dated.
  • Object Other Titles: Portrait
  • Artist Country: Australia

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