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R.B. Kitaj

3 of 6 portraits of R.B. Kitaj

R.B. Kitaj, by Frank Auerbach, 1980 - NPG 6558 - © Frank Auerbach / Marlborough Fine Art (London) Ltd / National Portrait Gallery, London

© Frank Auerbach / Marlborough Fine Art (London) Ltd / National Portrait Gallery, London

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R.B. Kitaj

by Frank Auerbach
etching, 1980
6 in. x 5 3/8 in. (151 mm x 137 mm)
Purchased, 1981
Primary Collection
NPG 6558

Sitterback to top

  • R.B. Kitaj (1932-2007), Painter. Sitter in 6 portraits, Artist of 4 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Frank Auerbach (1931-), Painter. Artist of 5 portraits, Sitter in 25 portraits.

This portraitback to top

The American born painter and graphic artist Kitaj came to Britain in 1958. He was associated with the Pop Art movement and achieved international acclaim for his richly allusive, large-scale figure compositions of the 1970s and 1980s.

Linked publicationsback to top

Subject/Themeback to top

Events of 1980back to top

Current affairs

Margaret Thatcher makes one of her most famous speeches, living up to her nickname of 'the Iron Lady'. The speech was given to the Conservative Party conference in Brighton in response to the media speculation that the party would go back on its counter-inflationary policies: 'The lady's not for turning!'

Art and science

John Lennon is murdered on the steps of his house. After fatally shooting him, Mark David Chapman calmly sat down on the pavement and waited to be arrested by police. Chapman had a history of mental illness and claimed that he had committed the murder as a way of getting attention.


Iraq invades Iran, beginning eight years of conflict. The invasion followed years of border disputes, but was precipitated by the 1979 revolution in Iran and the resulting instability which Saddam Hussein saw as an opportunity to expand Iraqi influence in the region. Despite early gains for Iraq, the conflict soon descended into a war of attrition with huge causalities caused by Iraq's use of chemical weapons.

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