Press Release “Francis Bacon: Five Decades”

Francis Bacon
five decades

Francis Bacon Three studies for a self-portrait 1979–80, oil on canvas, triptych 37.5 × 31.8 cm each, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection, 1998 © The Estate of Francis Bacon. DACS/Licensed by Viscopy. Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art/Art Resources/Scala, Florence

Surveying Francis Bacon’s life and work, this is the first major exhibition in Australia of rare works by the master of post-war British art.

With over 50 paintings as well as archival material from his studio, films and photographs, the exhibition covers every decade of his career, from the pensive and shocking works of the 1940s to the exuberantly coloured and visceral large paintings of the 1970s and 80s.

As well as the sensual enjoyment of paint, Bacon’s work speaks of violence, from depictions of a screaming pope to crucifixions, animals and carcasses, ancient Greek figures and distorted, emotionally charged portraits of his close friends and lovers.

Curated by the Art Gallery of NSW, the exhibition has been four years in the making, with works drawn from private collections and Australian and international institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Tate Modern in London, the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and the Francis Bacon Estate.

The length of the exhibition has been extended by one week:

17 November 2012 – 24th February 2013
Tickets on sale at the museum late July 2012

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