Francis Bacon: Incunabula

Francis Bacon: Incunabula

  1. Martin Harrison
  2. Rebecca Daniels
  • ISBN 9780500093443
  • 30.00 x 24.00 cm
  • Hardback
  • 224pp
  • Illustrated in colour throughout
  • First published 2008
‘Invaluable … the sheer range of material reproduced here is exhilarating’ – Richard Cork, Art Quarterly
‘Fascinating … the aftermath of a visual orgy’ – The Guardian

Published for the first time, a unique collection of Francis Bacon's source material and working documents

In 1949 Francis Bacon found his subject – the human body – and from then on it remained his principal theme. But he did not paint from life. Instead he appropriated images from the mass media that he manipulated into his ‘studies’. His paintings bore witness to the shattered psychology of the time and shot him to a prominence that hardly diminished over the next fifty years, and that continues to rise.

This book presents many of the ‘working documents’ about which Bacon was entirely secretive but which, it emerges, were integral to his creative process. Culled from thousands of pieces of original material found in his studio, including newspapers, magazines, books and photographs, these items have each been exhaustively and minutely researched, providing for the first time comprehensive details of the artist’s sources.

Nearly all previously unseen, these visually thrilling documents demonstrate Bacon’s unerring eye for seeking out visual stimulation in the most unexpected places. His paintings emerged from a dialogue between great art of the past, photographic imagery of the present and early cinema.

This unique selection of material – thoroughly researched, meticulously documented and compellingly presented – will provide an invaluable insight into both the artist’s work and working methods.

Martin Harrison is the editor of the Francis Bacon: Catalogue Raisonné, launched on 28th April 2016 and the author of In Camera: Francis Bacon (Thames & Hudson 2005). He also curated an exhibition of Bacon’s late paintings, ‘Death Shadowing Life’, at the Hermitage Museum in 2010. Rebecca Daniels is an independent scholar who was engaged in research on the catalogue raisonné. Barbara Dawson is Director of the the Hugh Lane Gallery, Dublin.