This book brings together the most recent work by Luc Tuymans. It has been shown in the Talbot Rice Gallery in Edinburgh in the autumn of 2015. Birds of a Feather shows Tuymans’ fascination with the Scottish Enlightenment and its thinkers, who believed in the ability of humans to shape their future rationally and whose influence extended as far as the United States. Stimulated by a visit to the art collection of the University of Edinburgh, Tuymans did three small portraits of Scottish philosophers, originally painted by the eighteenth-century portrait artist Henry Raeburn.
The theme of the Enlightenment is combined with menacing horror: in a monumental dark work, The Shore, which alludes to Goya’s pinturas negras, or in the portrait of the murderer and cannibal Issei Sagawa. The British writer Will Self wrote a remarkable short story for The Shore, and the art critic Colin Chinnery has contributed an explanatory essay.