Francis BaconStudy for Portrait on Folding Bed 1963

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Artwork details

Artist
Francis Bacon (1909‑1992)
Title
Study for Portrait on Folding Bed
Date 1963
MediumOil paint on canvas
Dimensionssupport: 1981 x 1473 mm frame: 2198 x 1690 x 82 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Purchased 1963
Reference
T00604

Display caption

The body is often highly distorted in Bacon’s paintings. In this picture, for example, parts of the head and lower body are almost illegible. Bacon has used texture and visceral colours to describe the flesh, bone and blood of the head. The dribbles and splatters of paint are reminiscent of leaking bodily fluids, bringing attention to the physical material of the body and suggesting violence.

The art historian David Mellor has argued that such pictures share much with Walter Sickert’s Camden Town paintings of prostitutes on beds ‘where gross, abject matter was well to the fore’.

July 2008

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Category

Painting (5,302)

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