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EDITIONS
 Thursday, 19 December, 2002, 10:18 GMT
Freud painting is top Tate card
Lucian Freud's Girl With White Dog
Lucian Freud's Girl With White Dog
A painting by British artist Lucian Freud has emerged as the top-selling postcard at the Tate Britain in London in 2002.

Freud's Girl With White Dog has beaten the previous top-seller, Ophelia, by Victorian artist Millais.

The card has been a big seller after the gallery ran a three-month retrospective of Freud's work.

The painting, which is 50 years old, shows the artist's first wife Kitty Epstein lying with a breast exposed and a dog on her lap.

Millais' Ophelia has been the biggest seller at the gallery for the last 10 years.

It shows the heroine from Shakespeare's Hamlet floating downstream after committing suicide.

Tate director Sir Nicholas Serota said: "This shows how the British audience for contemporary art has grown.
Millais' Ophelia
Millais' Ophelia has been the bestseller for the last 10 years

"Millais' Ophelia is an arresting image, but Freud's Girl With White Dog is perhaps more challenging."

The Millais painting was one of the original 65 artworks bequeathed to the nation by philanthropist Henry Tate, who also donated 80,000 to the building of the original Tate Gallery, on the River Thames at Millbank, which opened in 1897.

Tate Britain attracted over 200,000 people to the Freud exhibition over the summer.

Two more Freud paintings feature in the top 10 of the gallery's bestselling postcards.

Tate Britain has had less of the limelight since the launch of its contemporary art arm, Tate Modern, downstream at Bankside in 2000.

Next autumn, the gallery will host the major exhibition on Turner and Venice, featuring his vision of the city that fascinated so many artists, as well as work by influences such as Canaletto.

In 2005, the gallery also plans to host a Turner-Whistler-Monet exhibition, in conjunction with galleries in France and Canada.

See also:

12 Dec 02 | Entertainment
01 Nov 02 | Newsmakers
08 Oct 02 | Entertainment
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24 Sep 02 | Entertainment
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