Beautiful and full of emotive depth, Night Interior is an astonishing and defining image in Lucian Freud’s oeuvre. Depicting Penny Cuthbertson naked and resting in the artist’s Paddington studio, Freud captures the delicate poise of her turned head and the sinuous curves of her body through a virtuoso of looping, arching brushstrokes to deliver a painting full of impulse and exacting, spectacular detail. In the present work Cuthbertson appears relaxed and serene, her head tilted to one side, slightly away from the painter, her eyes shut, dreaming.
Between 1966 and 1970 Freud executed seven portraits of Cuthbertson, his most important sitter of the period. This group of portraits comes to a magnificent conclusion in the present work, the very final painting of her. Night Interior is being offered in the Modern and Contemporary Evening Auction, featuring Face to Face: A Celebration of Portraiture on 27 June at Sotheby's London.