HIGHLIGHTS OF THE YEAR: 2016

Francis Bacon, Triptych, 1987. Oil on canvas. © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.
Francis Bacon, Triptych, 1987 (Catalogue raisonné number: 87-05). As exhibited earlier this year in the one-day London show ‘Francis Bacon: Six Studies in Soho’. Oil on canvas. © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.

As the year draws to a close, we reflect on another busy twelve months celebrating the life and art of Francis Bacon.

2016 provided fantastic opportunities to view Bacon’s art. The major exhibition ‘Francis Bacon: Invisible Rooms’ displayed first at Tate Liverpool and is now on view at Germany’s Staatsgalerie Stuttgart. The Grimaldi Forum Monaco hosted the monumental show ‘Francis Bacon, Monaco and French Culture’, curated by Martin Harrison, which now displays as ‘Francis Bacon: From Picasso to Velázquez’ at Museo Guggenheim Bilbao. The Estate supported each of these four shows.

Bacon’s art was also presented in New YorkLos AngelesParis, and in UK displays in Norwich and presently York.

Ahead of the publication of the ‘Francis Bacon: Catalogue Raisonné’ the Estate organised a one-day, free-admission show in London entitled ‘Francis Bacon: Six Studies in Soho’. 2,200 attendees viewed not only six Francis Bacon works, but also first editions of the catalogue.

'Francis Bacon Catalogue Raisonné' was published on 30 June, © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.
‘Francis Bacon Catalogue Raisonné’ was published on 30 June, © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.

30 June 2016 was a landmark date for not only everyone at the Estate but every Francis Bacon art enthusiast, as it marked the long-awaited global publication of ‘Francis Bacon: Catalogue Raisonné’. The catalogue containing each of Bacon’s 584 paintings has been edited by Martin Harrison, FSA, the pre-eminent expert on Bacon’s work, alongside research assistant Dr Rebecca Daniels. An ambitious and painstaking project that has been over ten years in the making, this seminal visual document eclipses in scope any previous publication on the artist and will have a profound effect on the perception of his work.

Image: Francis Bacon, Lying Figure, 1969. Oil on canvas. The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.
Francis Bacon, Lying Figure, 1969. Oil on canvas. The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved. A lithograph of this painting was donated by the Estate to the Terrence Higgins Trust charity auction.

Among other supportive activities carried out by the Estate in 2016 was the opportunity to honour the memory of Christophe Dejean, who was a key member of staff at The Estate of Francis Bacon. Christophe was a long-time supporter of the Terrence Higgins Trust charity and so we donated a lithograph of Francis Bacon’s Lying Figure, 1969, to the Terrence Higgins Trust Annual Event, The Auction.

It has also been another busy year for The Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation, their highlights include performing a lecture on ‘Francis Bacon and Monaco’ with Martin Harrison, within the framework of conferences organised by the Prince Pierre Foundation of Monaco, and participation in Monaco’s first “Nuit Blanche”.

It’s an enormous pleasure to be able to share our activities via this website and our Facebook and Twitter channels. We look forward to sharing more exciting Francis Bacon news with you in 2017.

From everyone at The Estate of Francis Bacon, we wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

 

*Please note all details including featured works, display/exhibition dates and hours are subject to change, and tickets are subject to availability and access, for all confirmation please contact the hosting Gallery/Museum.

CATALOGUE RAISONNÉ FOCUS: ‘WATERCOLOUR’ 1929

Francis Bacon, Watercolour 1929. © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved.
Francis Bacon, ‘Watercolour’ 1929. Watercolour, gouache, pencil and black ink on paper. © The Estate of Francis Bacon / DACS London 2016. All rights reserved. Catalogue Raisonné number 29-01.

Early this year saw the long-awaited publication of the ‘Francis Bacon Catalogue Raisonné’. Presenting for the first time ever the entire oeuvre of Bacon’s 584 paintings, including many previously unpublished works.

The Estate of Francis Bacon is always investigating new opportunities to share the life and art of Francis Bacon, and so today is excited to begin sharing excerpts from the catalogue via this website and our Facebook and Twitter channels.

An apt starting point to initiate our ‘Francis Bacon Catalogué Raisonné Focus’ is with Bacon’s first completed painting ‘Watercolour’ 1929.

‘Bacon recalled his first encounter with the works of Picasso, which he said occurred in 1927, as a kind of epiphany, despite which several years elapsed before its impact was manifested in his paintings. The leaves at the bottom left of ‘Watercolour’ and the late-cubist forms in general were derived from Fernand Léger, the classic portico from Giorgio de Chirico, and the sections of brick wall from Jean Lurçat’s Smyrne I (1929 private collection). Bacon was aligning himself with European modernism, although the stylised diver is typical of Parisian art déco. At this stage there is little distinction between Bacon’s designs for rugs and screens and his independent art works.’ – Excerpt:Martin Harrison, FSA. 29-01 ‘Watercolour’ 1929, Catalogue Raisonné Volume II, page 108.

We’ll be sharing further excerpts in the near future. If you’d like to order a copy of the ‘Francis Bacon: Catalogue Raisonné’ please visit Heni Publishing’s website.