28 October 1909; Dublin, Ireland
28 April 1992
1930 - 1992
An Irish-born English painter, Francis Bacon was a figurative artist best know for his emotionally raw, bold, and graphic designs. He was a sickly child, with severe asthma, and violent allergic attacks to horses and dogs, the pain of which was often controlled by morphine. There is a story that Bacon’s father, always trying to make him manlier, was going to drag him along with him on a hunting trip, but Bacon was able to get out of the trip by sleeping next to the dog the night before.
Before he began painting, he drifted along with his childhood nanny, who remained his companion until her death, often stealing for food or money, or working small jobs and dodging rent. During this time, he traveled throughout much of Europe, and was exposed to many great works of art, many of which would become important influences in his later works. He did not begin his artistic career until his 20’s when he worked as an interior designer, and furniture and rug artist. He began painting seriously in his 30’s, and in 1944 premiered his breakout work Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion, which sealed his artistic reputation as a bleak artist of the human condition.
During his travels in Paris in 1935, he purchased a book on disease of the mouth at a second hand store. Bacon obsessed over these images, and they haunted his style, influencing many of his works and color palettes. As an artist, he spent time with many friends and acquaintances, eating, drinking, and gambling in London. In 1964, he met the man who would have a major impact on his life, George Dyer.
According to Bacon, he met Dyer as he was attempting to break into his house. They quickly became lovers, and were strangely alike, as they both were borderline alcoholics, and obsessive about their appearances. In Bacon’s painting of the mid-1960’s Dyer is the dominating presence. Unfortunately, their relationship began a tumultuous turn when Dyer’s drinking became a problem, and he became a nuisance to Bacon and his circle of artist friends. Dyer, who felt his influence beginning to slip, tried to get Bacon’s attention by calling the cops on him and attempting suicide a number of times. In October of 1971, the night before Bacon’s exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris, Dyer took an overdose of barbiturates and died. Dyer’s death had a severe impact on Bacon and his art, which became a personal battle, preoccupied with themes of death.
Artworks of Francis Bacon are removed from WikiArt due to a copyright infringement notice. The representative authority of a copyright holder, who claims Francis Bacon’s artworks to be his intellectual property, is VAGA (http://vagarights.com/)