• October 6, 2019

    Louise Courtnell met Robert Lenkiewicz in 1987. He became her mentor and teacher and there followed an intensive two year 'apprenticeship' in painting, which concentrated on the understanding of tone.

    Her work includes landscape and still-life, however she has always had a passion for portraiture. She has been a regular exhibitor at the National Portrait Gallery, (BP Portrait Award) from 1991 to 2001 and was commended for two self-portraits. Commissions have included Dr. Rowan Williams, (2002) and Robert, Earl of Edgcumbe, (2008).

    She reveres the work of Rembrandt and Van Dyck. In her opinion, the greatest and most moving paintings ever made were Rembrandt's late self-portraits, which remind us of our own mortality and humanity. She also feels strongly that there is a place for the observational painter in a world of the instant, digital image.

    Courtnell has run a painting class in Kingsand for 17 years and gives private tuition, following Robert's approach to...

  • November 14, 2017

    Roger Malone of the Western Morning News sees the end of an era and a positive future for the Robert Lenkiewicz Library.

    There is a palpable legacy of celebrated and controversial artist Robert Lenkiewicz as you enter St Saviours, tucked away amidst the back-streets of Plymouth ’s Barbican. The dusty, almost Gothic building with  rumbling bell tower and quaint observatory offering near-360 degree views of city and sea, was an ideal location for the artist’s personal library of Art and Art History. After Lenkiewicz died in 2002 the collection of  25,000 books passed to his estate – and finally, what still remained after the most valuable were sold by the  Executor, to The Lenkiewicz Foundation. Now the stacked shelves at St Saviours are being cleared of weighty tomes in what is the artist’s last tangible link with the Barbican which had been his creative base since he arrived in the city in 1966. Trustee of The Lenkiewicz Foundation, Francis Mallett and a team of helpers are...

  • March 3, 2015


    Project name :     Alterations to and restoration of St Saviours Church Hall                                 
    Client :                The Lenkiewicz Foundation and Fotonow          


    The building

    St Saviours Church Hall, Lambhay Hill, was built in the 1880s to serve as a Sunday school to the (former) Anglican church adjacent, itself built as a chapel of ease to the Church of the Holy Trinity in Southside Street.  The hall is a handsome two-storey building of local limestone with Ham Hill stone dressings, erected by local building contractors Messrs Palk and Partidge. Bombing destroyed both St Saviours and Holy Trinity churches in 1941, but St Saviours Hall survived largely intact, and its upper room was subsequently converted into a chapel.  Ownership of the building later passed to Plymouth City Council, and in the mid 1990s Robert Lenkiewicz acquired...

  • December 2, 2014

    The recently removed Last Judgement mural has revealed an earlier work on the House That Jack Built in Southside Street. The building's owners, John and Adele Nash, approached Lenkiewicz in the spring of 1983 and asked him to create a mural for the building. With the Sexual Behaviour Project nearing completion and early ideas for paintings on 'English Education' on his mind, the first statement hints at the artist's current preoccupations.

    By November, Lenkiewicz had commissioned a number of panels totalling 240 sq ft, on which he could work in his studio. His diaries record a period of intensive research into the themes of Dante’s Inferno and the Last Judgement. The figures on the left of the earlier mural derive from a series of sketches and papier-mâché forms which the artist was exploring. The finished mural on panels was unveiled in October 1985. (At the top of the wall you can see illustrations not by Lenkiewicz’s hand, added in 2014).


  • March 14, 2014

    The Friday Project and The Lenkiewicz Foundation have teamed up to create an interactive digital edition of one of artist Robert Lenkiewicz's most personal and controversial ‘Projects’.

    The iBook is now available on the iTunes store at a special introductory price of £4.99. In November an eBook edition will appear for Kindles and other tablets.

    The Mary Notebook is an intense and erotically-charged collection of sketches, paintings and writing by Lenkiewicz from the period of his life when he was courting the woman who was to become his third wife. It has previously only been published as an expensive facsimile book limited to 350 copies over fifteen years ago.

    Scott Pack, publisher at Friday Project, says: 'This really is a unique work and something which should be widely available to art enthusiasts and Lenkiewicz fans so I am thrilled to be working on an affordable digital version which can...

  • October 13, 2013

    Check our News and Events announcements on this website or our Facebook page for updates.

    Picture: Governors of Southway School (The Blind Leading the Blind), 1987. Oil on canvas, 213 x 610 cm.

  • September 14, 2013

    Three days of rain gave way to clear sky over Nuremberg for the opening of TLF's touring exhibition Menschliches, Allzumenschlices. 1,500+ visitors passed through the space in the first six hours. The exhibition has enjoyed editorial attention in 'The Süddeutsche Zeitung', southern Germany's regional newspaper, as well as a couple of local papers and several national art magazines. The mayor announced the opening of Auf AEG's 4th annual event – a Nuremberg cultural favourite. UPDATE: Good though the attendance figures for the opening day were, the second day broke all existing TLF records as the exhibition visitor count topped 6,000 for the two days - we have high expectations for the month to come. The Nuremberg audience has proved to be interested and engaged with the paintings and information, spending ample time within the space.

    The exhibition takes place within the Auf AEG industrial complex - a converted metropolis of modern...
  • July 21, 2013

    The BBC 'Great Continental Railway Journeys' team filmed within the Spinnerei on the last day of the Lenkiewicz exhibition 'Human, All Too Human'. Michael Portillo travels on the great train routes of Europe, as he retraces the journeys featured in George Bradshaw's 1913 Continental Railway Guide. The programme will be broadcast later this year.

    View an album of images of the event on the TLF Facebook page.

  • June 27, 2013

    Click here to view the YouTube video.

    Curator Francis Mallett gives an introduction to the exhibition 'Human, All Too Human' at the Werkschau gallery in the Spinnerei cultural complex in Leipzig, Germany. Until 21 July - The first international exhibition of the painter's work. Open Tuesday to Saturday: 11 – 6 pm; Sunday: 11 – 4 pm. Admission is free.

    This landmark show is the largest exhibition of the artist's work to date, recognizing a number of cultural and biographical connections between Lenkiewicz and Leipzig. His Polish-born Jewish father was a horse trader in Saxony before escaping just prior to World War II. According to family tradition Lenkiewicz's great grandfather was court painter to King Ludwig II of Bavaria. His great grandfather's portrait hung in the Jewish hotel in London run by his parents where Lenkiewicz grew up. Encouraged by his mother,...

  • June 22, 2013

    The first international exhibition of paintings by British artist Robert Lenkiewicz (1941–2002) will take place this year. The Lenkiewicz Foundation has organised the exhibition, to be held at The Spinnerei in Leipzig through 23 June – 21 July. Lenkiewicz worked in Plymouth for over three decades, finding extraordinary interest in the lives of the city’s inhabitants. The ten-year anniversary of his death was celebrated last year in the city by a large-scale exhibition of his work at the Royal William Yard, entitled 'Human, All Too Human'.

    See the 2013 Exhibitions page for further details. View a video introduction by curator Francis Mallett here.

    Supported by The Somerville Gallery & The AJ Acker Collection



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