Sunday, August 16, 2009

Francis Bacon's Self-Portraits

1969, age 60.
1969, age 60.
Late 1969, age 61.
1971, age 63.
1972, age 64.
1973, age 65.
1976, age 68.
1985-86, age 77.

Your George (?):
In 1964, Bacon began a relationship with 39-year-old Eastender George Dyer, whom he met, he claimed, while the latter was burgling his apartment. A petty criminal with a history of borstal (youth detention) and prison, Dyer was a somewhat tortured individual [...]. The relationship was stormy and in 1971, on the eve of Bacon's major retrospective at the Paris Grand Palais, Dyer committed suicide in the hotel room they were sharing, overdosing on barbiturates.
It was five years after their meeting that the first of these was painted. They flank his death: two years before to fourteen years after. No one responsible, certainly not Bacon himself, would ever frame them this way. Most are unrelated altogether. I'm irresponsible from time to time.

It was two years after George's death that Bacon painted this triptych of the event.

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