Acrylic on canvas, portrait. Signed and attr. Francis Bacon (Irish, 1909-1992) on upper right corner. 23 x 18.75 in (58.4 x 47.6 cm). Francis Bacon was a dominant figure of postwar art, and his canvases remain unmistakable for their contorted emotion and visceral physicality. â€œI would like my pictures to look as if a human being had passed between them, like a snail leaving its trail of the human presence... as a snail leaves its slime,â€ he once said. Among his signature motifs were screaming and disfigured heads, grappling homosexual lovers, and flanks of meat, and his style is characterized by its flat backgrounds and sense of motion, derived from the frequent use of photography and film stills as sources for portraiture. Mostly self-taught, Bacon nonetheless drew influence from an impossibly wide range of artists, from Vincent van Gogh, Eadweard Muybridge, and filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein, to Rembrandt, Masaccio, Titian, and especially Diego VelÃ¡zquez, making explicit visual references to many of their works in his paintings. His lasting influence can be seen in particular among Young British Artists such as Damien Hirst, Jenny Saville, and Jake and Dinos Chapman.
All authorship of items in this catalog are described according to the following terms:
By [Artist Name] : In our opinion, the work is by the artist.
Attributed to [Artist Name] : In our opinion, the work may be ascribed to the artist on the basis of style, but there may be some question as to actual authorship.
In the manner of [Artist Name] : In our opinion, the work was executed by an unknown hand, but was designed deliberately to emulate the style of the artist.
After [Artist Name] : In our opinion, the work was executed by an unknown hand, but is a deliberate copy of a known work by the artist.
Circle of [Artist Name] : In our opinion, a work of the period of the artist showing his influence, closely associated with the artist but not necessarily his pupil.
Follower of [Artist Name]: In our opinion, a work by a pupil or a follower of the artist (not necessarily a pupil).
American, 19th century : In our opinion, this work was executed by an unknown hand, and can only be identified by origin (i.e., region, period).
Bears signature : In our opinion, the signature on the artwork may be spurious.
Apocryphal : Of doubtful authenticity.