If you asked me who my favorite figure painter is I would answer Jenny Saville with no question.
I had the opportunity to see a career retrospective in Oxford this past June and it was amazing. Her scale for one thing is... amazing. It is so big, like over ten feet, and no photo can do that justice. I could have sat in front of these paintings for hours every day and still not feel like I saw everything.
Unlike a lot of other large scale artists, the detail and technique in describing and expressing the figure is not lost on such a massive canvas. There is an old adage that basically if you aren't a great painter, then paint big.
Jenny Saville is not that painter, even nose to canvas, every inch is interesting and complex and realized.
She is the kind of painter that inspires and defeats you at the same time.