The life and works of Francis Bacon
List of Illustrations 4
Early life 5
Paris and Berlin 5
The Triptych 6
The Screaming Pope 7
1960’s onwards 8
Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion, 1944
Second Version of Triptych 1944, 1988
Head I, 1947-48
Head VI, 1949
Study after Velázquez’s Portrait of Pope innocent X, 1953
Pope innocent X, Diego Velázquez, 1650
After Muybridge – Study of Human Figure in Motion – Woman Emptying a Bowl of Water/Paralytic Child walking on all Fours, 1965
Francis Bacon gained major acclaim for his work during the 20th century. He was best known for his shocking figurative style depicting bodies twisted and deformed with gaping screaming mouths.
In this essay I will be looking at some of Bacon’s most famous paintings; examining if his difficult childhood and growing up in an era of war has impacted his work. In particular I shall be studying his early life and influences before looking into theories proposed by critics of his more notorious works including Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion and Study after Velázquez’s Portrait of Pope innocent X.
Francis Bacon was born on October 28th 1909 in Dublin to Christina Winifred "Winnie" Firth and Captain Anthony Edward Mortimer ("Eddy") Bacon; an ex-army captain turned horse trainer feared for his violent outbursts and sadistic bullying.
One of five children, Bacon was considered the ‘sickly child’ often ordered by his father off to hunt knowing that prolonged exposure to horses or dogs caused him to suffer asthma attacks, actions that coupled with ordering the horse grooms to horse-whip him were an attempt to ‘make him a man’. These were the same grooms Bacon later went...