In the early days of his success half a century ago, Lucian Freud was a charismatic playboy, a lady-killer with an Alvis. He mixed as easily with Soho lowlife as with Mayfair toffs. Frail now, stick-thin, stooped, his face bloodless, his nose like a hawk’s bill, I see him shuffling up Holland Park Avenue to Lidgate, the bespoke butchers, to buy steaks for the whippet; woodcock, quail and snipe for his human sitters. In crumpled chinos and laceless trainers, a thin grey scarf around his collarless neck, there’s more than a hint of old Steptoe. Yet with an income estimated in 2003 as �12m a year, he is twice as rich as Robbie Williams, they say, and despite the geriatric grunginess, he can still mesmerise women old enough to be his granddaughters.
via from the floor