Francis Bacon Five Decades

Francis Bacon

Five Decades

(in association with the Art Gallery of New South Wales)
  1. Edited by Anthony Bond
  2. With essays by Martin Harrison
  • ISBN 9780500291955
  • 27.50 x 22.00 cm
  • Paperback with flaps
  • 240pp
  • With over 215 colour illustrations
  • First published 2015

Francis Bacon (1909 1992) was one of the great figurative painters of the twentieth century

This book, newly available in paperback, provides a thorough account of the life and work of this complex and conflicted artist, whose paintings retain their visceral impact and relevance today.

Essays by international scholars provide new insights into Bacon’s art and life, and some fifty art works from every decade of his career – from the pensive and shocking works of the 1940s to the exuberantly coloured and visceral large paintings of the 1970s and ’80s – show Bacon’s unique representations of the human body through his mastery of paint.

Over 150 additional illustrations portray his studio, friends and lovers, and reveal the diversity of his source materials, from Velázquez to the motion photos of Eadweard Muybridge. As well as the sensual enjoyment of paint, Bacon’s work speaks of violence, from depictions of a screaming pope to crucifixions, animals and carcasses, ancient Greek figures and distorted, emotionally charged portraits of his close friends and lovers.

Anthony Bond, curator of the Francis Bacon: Five Decades exhibition, was assistant director and head of international art at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (1992–2013). He is now a freelance art writer and curator.