Colin Gleadell doesn’t explain in the Telegraph why the bookmaker Victor Chandler is selling five works by Lucien Freud in Thursday’s Sotheby’s sale in London. Nor does he explain just how all of the paintings came to be in Chandler’s possession when Freud was known to be a heavy gambler and loser (though he does point out that at least two were bought from a dealer.) Nonetheless, Gleadell’s ability to ID Chandler as the consignor is a reminder of his prowess among art market reporters:
Known as the “gentleman’s bookmaker” for his fairness in the gaming world, Chandler met Freud in the late 1970s, when the self-portrait was acquired directly from the artist, and sat for his portrait in the late 1980s, when the two became friends. Freud was fascinated by horses and this evolved into a love of gambling. “When I gambled, I never stopped until I had lost everything,” he once told the critic Martin Gayford. Freud’s portrait of Chandler, Man in a String Chair, sold for £4 million at Christie’s in 2006.
Market News (Telegraph)