Francis Bacon 1909-1992

Francis Bacon is the most important British painter of the twentieth century. He initially established his reputation in London in the 1940s when he was widely publicised for the horror of his imagery, in which he sought to strip man of any veneer of civilisation to expose the psyche of the subject and reveal the Human Condition.

He is often associated with the School of London, a circle of figurative painters that includes Michael Andrews, Frank Auerbach, Lucian Freud, Leon Kossoff and R.B.Kitaj.

In his recreation of the subject Bacon built from Picasso to create a brilliantly inventive art that combined chance with control.

Born in Dublin, Ireland

At the outbreak of war, family move to London. Thereafter the family move back and forth between England and Irleand changing houses every year or two, never having a permanent home

Bacon suffered with asthma as a child & is privately tutored. Leaves home at 16 and moves to London

Travels to Berlin and Paris - saw Picasso exhibition which inspires him to start making drawings and watercolours

Returns to London. Exhibits in his Queensbury Mews studio furniture and rugs made from his own designs. Begins painting in oils

Arranges a joint exhibition at his studio with Roy de Maistre, showing furniture as well as paintings and gouaches. The Studio magazine features a double page article on his studio titled 'The 1930 Look in British Decoration'

Moves to Fulham Road. Gradually abandons his work as a decorator in order to devote himself to painting. Earns his living by doing odd jobs, none of them connected with art

Paints Crucifixion 1933 which is reproduced in Herbert Read's Art Now

First one-man show at the Transition Gallery, Sunderland House. Discouraged by its lack of success, he paints less and less and starts to gamble

Work submitted to the International Surrealist Exhibition rejected for being "not sufficiently surreal"

Takes part in group exhibition, Young British Painters at Agnews, London organised by his friend Eric Hall. Other artists included Roy de Maistre, Graham Sutherland, Victor Pasmore and Ivon Hitchens

Rents Millais's old studio in Kensington. Destroys all his earlier works (only ten canvases remain from the period 1929-44). Declared unfit for military service due to his asthma and is assigned to Civil Defence (ARP)

Resumes paintins and executes the triptych Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion which causes considerable consternation when shown at the Lefevre Gallery in April 1945. Acquired by the Tate in 1953

Exhibits Figure in a Landscape and Figure Study II in group exhibitions held at the Lefevre and Redfern Galleries. Other artists included Matthew Smith, Henry Moore and Graham Sutherland

Lives mainly in Monte Carlo. Friendship with Graham Sutherland

Alfred H. Barr purchases Painting 1946, one of his most important works for the MoMA, New York

One-man show at Hanover Gallery, London, who became his agent for the next ten years. Begins painting the series of heads, including Head VI which is regarded as the first of the "Pope" paintings

Teaches briefly at the Royal College of Art

First portrait of Lucian Freud

First one-man show outside the UK at Durlacher Brothers, New York

Represents Great Britain in the XXVII Venice Biennale with Ben Nicholson and Lucian Freud

First retrospective at the ICA, London. Paints portraits of collectors Robert and Lisa Sainbury who become his patrons

Visits Tangier to seee his friend Peter Lacey. Returns there frequently during the next three years

Signs contract with Marlborough Fine Art Ltd., London

Paints for a while in St. Ives, Cornwall

Paints his first large triptych Three Studies for a Crucifixion acquired by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Death of Peter Lacey

Friendship with George Dyer who becomes a model for many of his paintings

Awarded the Painting Prize at the Pittsburg International and the Rubens Prize by the City of Siegen

Death of his friend George Dyer

Died in Madrid, Spain

Selected Exhibitions

Francis Bacon, Tate Britain, London

Violence and Sensation; Francis Bacon and the Remaking of Appearence, James Hyman Gallery, London

Francis Bacon; Prints, James Hyman Gallery, London

Kontellationem III, Stadel Museum, Frankfurt, Germany

Modern Prints - Klassische Moderne bis Pop Art, Galerie Proarata, Zurich, Switzerland

2006 - 2007
Francis Bacon - The Violence of the Real, K20 Kunstsammlung Nordhein Westfalen, Düsseldorf, Germany

Bienal del Aire, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Caracas Sofía Imber (MACCSI), Caracas, Venezuela

Summer Exhibition, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Mirada mMuseo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain

Francis Bacon, Gagosian Gallery, London

Francis Bacon: Die Portraits, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany

De Picasso a Basquiat, Musée Maillol, Fondation Dina Vierny, Paris, France

Celebración del arte: Medio siglo de la Fundación Juan March, Fundación Juan March, Madrid, Spain

Summer Exhibition 2005, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Francis Bacon: Studying Form, Faggionato Fine Art, London, UK

Whatmodern?, Gagosian Gallery, New York, NY

Hidden Histories, The New Art Gallery Walsall, Walsall, West Midlands, UK

Modern Means: Continuity and Change in Art from 1880 to the Present, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan

Francis Bacon: Le Sacré et le Profane, Musée Maillol, Fondation Dina Vierny, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Kunsthistoriches Museum, Vienna; touring to Basel, Fondation Beyeler

Francis Bacon, Institut Valencia d'Art Modern, Valencia, Spain

Francis Bacon, Museu de Arte Contemporanea, Museu Serralves, Oporto, Portugal

Francis Bacon: Last Paintings, Faggionato Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Tony Shafrazi Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Fondation Vincent Van Gogh-Arles, Arles, France

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, The Netherlands

Francis Bacon, Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, Dublin

Auerbach, Bacon, Freud, Kossoff, James Hyman Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, US

Francis Bacon, New Haven, The Yale Centre for British art; travelled to: Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Institute of Arts; San Francisco, Museum of Modern Art; Fort Worth, Museum of Modern Art

Francis Bacon: Works on Paper, Tate Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Faggionato Fine Arts, London

Francis Bacon, Galerie Lelong, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Louisiana Museum, Humlebaek, Denmark

Francis Bacon, Hayward Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Tony Shafrazi Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Centre G Pompidou, MNA, Paris, France; travelled to: Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Museo d'Arte Moderna, Lugano, Switzerland

Francis Bacon, Museo Correr, XLV Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Galeria Marlborough, Madrid, Spain

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, New York

Francis Bacon, Tate Gallery, Liverpool

Francis Bacon, Galerie Lelong, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington; travelled to: County Museum, Los Angeles; MOMA, New York

Central House of Artists, New Tretyakov, Moscow, Russia

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, Tokyo, Japan

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Galerie Beyeler, Basel, Switzerland

Francis Bacon, Galerie Lelong, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, New York

Francis Bacon, Tate Gallery, London; travelled to Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart; Nationalgaleri, Berlin

Francis Bacon, Galerie Maeght- Lelong, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Thomas Gibson Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, National Museum of Modern Art, Toyko, Japan; travelled to National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto; Aichi Prefectural Art Gallery, Nagoya

Francis Bacon, Stadtische Kunsthalle, Mannheim, Germany

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Fundacion Juan March, Madrid, Spain; travelled to Fundacio Joan Miro, Barcelona, Spain

Francis Bacon, Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Museo de Arte Moderno, Mexico; travelled to: Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Caracas, Venezuela

Francis Bacon, Musee Cantini, Marseilles, France

Francis Bacon, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Galerie, Zurich, Switzerland

Francis Bacon, Galleria del Milione, Milan, Italy

Francis Bacon, Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Paris France; travelled to Stadische Kunsthalle, Dusseldorf, Germany

Francis Bacon, Galleria Galatea, Turin, Italy

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Gerson Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Galleria Toninelli Arte Moderna, Milan, Italy

Francis Bacon, Galerie Maeght, Paris, France; travelled to Marlborough Galleria d'arte, Rome; Marlborough Fine Art, London; Oberes Schloss, Germany

Francis Bacon, Hamburger Kunstverein, Hamburg, Germany; travelled to Moderna Museet, Stockholm; Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, Dublin; Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Contemporary Arts Association, Houston, Texas

Francis Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Granville Gallery, New York

Francis Bacon, Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, New York; travelled to The Art Institute, Chicago

Francis Bacon, The Tate Gallery, London; travelled to: Kunsthalle, Mannheim; Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna, Turin ; Zurich, Kunsthaus; Amsterdam, Stedelijk Musuem

Franics Bacon, Galleria Galatea, Milan, Italy

Francis Bacon, Nottingham University, Nottingham

Franics Bacon, Marlborough Fine Art, London

Francis Bacon, Hanover Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Richard L.Feigen Gallery, Chicago

Francis Bacon, Galleria Galatea, Turin, Italy; travelled to Galleria dell'Ariete, Milan; Galleria l'Obelisco, Rome

Francis Bacon, Galerie Rive Droite, Paris, France

Francis Bacon, Beaux-Arts Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, ICA, London

Francis Bacon, Hanover Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Durlacher Brothers, New York

Francis Bacon, Beaux-Arts Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Hanover Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Hanover Gallery, London

Francis Bacon, Transition Gallery, London

1928 - 1929
Francis Bacon, Artist's Studio, London

Selected Collections

Albright Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, USA
Art Centre, Des Moines, USA
Art Gallery, Aberdeen, Scotland
Art Gallery, Gothenburg, Sweden
Art Gallery, Kirklees Metropolitan Council, Huddersfield
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Art Museum Antheneum, Helsinki, Finland
Bezalel National Museum, Jerusalem, Israel
Boymans Van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Brera Museum of Modern Art, Milan, Italy
City Art Gallery, Birmingham
City Art Gallery, Manchester
Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna, Turin, Italy
Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, The Netherlands
Institute of Arts, Detroit, USA
Institure of Arts, Minneapolis, USA
Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, USA
King's College Hatton Gallery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne
Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany
Kunsthalle, Mannheim, Germany
Kunsthaus, Zurich, Switzerland
Kunstmuseum, Hanover, Germany
Kunstsammlung Nordhein-Westfallen, Dusseldorf, Germany
Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden
Musee Cantini, Marseille, France
Musee des Beaux-Arts, Ghent, Belgium
Musee des Beaux-Arts, Liege, Belgium
Musee National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France
Musees Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique, Brussels, Belgium
Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Caracas, Venezuela
Museo de Bellas Artes, Bilbao, Spain
Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City, Mexico
Museum and Art Gallery, Leicester
Museum of Art, Cleveland, USA
Museum of Art, Fukuoka, Japan
Museum of Fine Art, Dallas, USA
Museum of Modern Art, New York
Museum of Modern Art, Toyama, Japan
Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Australia
National Gallery of South Australia, Adeliade, Australia
National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, Wales
Pembroke College, Oxford
Phillips Collection, Washington, USA
Royal College of Art, London
Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart, Germany
Staatsgalerie Modern Kunst, Munich, Germany
Stadelches Kunstinstitut, Frankfurt, Germany
Stadtische Kunstgalerie, Bochum , Germany
Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Stedelijk Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Tate Collection, London
Temple Newsam House, Leeds
The Arts Council of Great Britain, London
The Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington, USA
The National Gallery of Canada, Ottowa, Canada
The National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
Ulster Museum, Belfast, Ireland
Univeristy Art Museum, Berkeley, USA
University of East Anglia, Norwich
Vassar College Art Gallery, Poughkeepsie, USA
Vatican Museum of Modern Art, Rome, Italy
Von der Heydt Museum, Wuppertal, Germany
Wallraf-Richartz Museum, Ludwig Collection, Cologne, Germany
Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester
Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, USA

Selected Publications

Alley, Ronald and Rothenstein, John, Francis Bacon, Thames & Hudson, 1964

Davies, Hugh and Yard, Sally, Bacon, Abbeville, 1986

Deleuze, Gilles, Francis Bacon, Logique de la Sensation (2 vol), La Différence, 1994

Farson, Daniel, The Gilded Gutter Life of Francis Bacon, Century, 1993

Gale, Matthew & Stephens, Chris, Francis Bacon, Tate Publishing, 2008

Hammer, Martine & Bailey, Paul, Francis Bacon: Portraits and Heads, National Galleries of Scotland, 2005

Harrison, Martin, Francis Bacon: Paintings from the Estate 1980-1991, Faggionato Fine Art, 1999

Kundera, Milan, Bacon, Portraits et Auto-portraits, Les Belles Lettres, 1996

Leiris, Michel, Francis Bacon, Full Face and in Profile, Phaidon, 1983

Peppiat, Michael, Francis Bacon: Anatomy of an Enigma, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1997

Russell, John, Francis Bacon (World of Art), Thames & Hudson, 1993

Schmied, Wieland, Francis Bacon, Commitment and Conflict, Prestel, 1996

Sollers, Philippe, Les Passions de Francis Bacon, Gallimard, 1996

Sylvestor, David, and Harrison, Martin, Francis Bacon: Studying Form, Faggionato Fine Art in association with the Estate of Francis Bacon, 2005

Sylvester, David, Interviews with Francis Bacon, Thames & Hudson, 1987

Sylvester, David, Interviews with Francis Bacon: 1962-1979 (New and enlarged edition), Thames and Hudson, 1980

Trucchi, Lorenza, Francis Bacon, Abrams, 1975

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