Exhibition Archive

Walter Sickert
The Camden Town Nudes

25 October 2007 to 20 January 2008

three paintings by Walter Sickert

At the beginning of the 20th century, Walter Sickert (1860-1942) painted a remarkable series of female nudes which confirmed his reputation as one of the most important modern British artists.

This was the first exhibition devoted to these radical works produced in Camden Town, north London, between 1905 and 1913. The uncompromising realism of Sickert’s nudes, set on iron bedsteads in the murky interiors of cheap lodging houses, challenged artistic conventions and divided critical opinion.

The exhibition traced Sickert’s reinvention of the nude, exploring the ways in which these powerful paintings addressed pressing artistic and social concerns of the period. It brought together many of his finest canvases, from both private and public collections, including Sickert’s four provocative Camden Town Murder paintings, which had never before been displayed together.

To complement the exhibition a display of Sickert’s drawings and prints from The Courtauld Gallery’s collections was also on show. These rarely seen works covered various periods of the artist’s career and demonstrated his exceptional talents as a draughtsman. 

“Already on my shortlist for the best exhibition of 2007”
The Daily Telegraph

 “A major show”
The Financial Times

 “Without him there would be no Freud, maybe no Bacon: so see it.”
The Independent

Listen to a special 75th anniversary podcast by exhibition curator Dr Barnaby Wright.

A fully illustrated exhibition catalogue is available from The Courtauld Gallery Shop.

Lead exhibition sponsor:
Friends of the Courtauld Institute of Art

Exhibition sponsors:
The estate of Lillian Browse
Nicholas and Judith Goodison
Offer Waterman & Co

LEFT: Walter Sickert The Iron Bedstead (detail) c. 1906, Earl and Countess of Harewood © Estate of Walter R. Sickert/DACS 2007 MIDDLE: La Hollandaise (detail) c.1906, Tate, London © Estate of Walter R. Sickert/DACS 2007. RIGHT: Walter Sickert The Camden Town Murder or What Shall we do for the Rent? (detail) c. 1908 Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund © Estate of Walter R. Sickert/DACS 2007.