*28 October 1909 in Dublin, Ireland
+28 April 1992 in Madrid, Spain
The Irish-born British artist Francis Bacon (October 28, 1909 Dublin – April 28, 1992 Madrid) belongs to the most important figurative painters of the 20th century. Bacon never received proper training as a painter. As an autodidact he found his way to painting at the end of the 1920s, having worked as an interior decorator before. His breakthrough came at the age of 34. In 1945 he exhibited the triptych “Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion” in a London gallery. This work received a lot of resonance and is seen as the starting point of career which was to follow.
Bacon had a reputation as a bon vivant, he liked going to casinos and spending excessive evenings with his drinking companions. These evenings, which Bacon used to observe his friends reveal themselves with each glass, served him as a great source of inspiration.
His art is characterized by deformed human bodies and faces located in dreamlike, constructed spaces. Two themes run through his work: portraits of his friends and variations of Diego Velàzquez “Pope Innocent X”. He liked to work in series, he frequently created diptychs and triptychs, whereby his entire oeuvre seems like a sequence or a variation of a motif. Nevertheless, it was important to him not to give his art a narrative element, so Bacon primarily depicted only one person on a canvas and did not determine any order for hanging his series. The individual pictures in a series are not intended to build on each other. Bacon did not want his works to be easily accessible and easy to explain.
In his life Bacon painted roughly 600 paintings. In contrast, the number of his prints is remarkably small: there are 9 etchings, 21 lithographs and 6 offset prints. It is this rarity that makes Francis Bacon’s prints so desirable and, in good condition, particularly rare.