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Francis Bacon (1909 – 1992)

Related: modern art - Gilles Deleuze - nightmare - UK - grotesque

Study after Velazquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent X (1953) - Francis Bacon
image sourced here.


Francis Bacon (October 28, 1909 – April 28, 1992) was an Anglo-Irish painter, atheist, gambler and bon vivant. He was a collateral descendant of the Elizabethan philosopher Francis Bacon.

His artwork was well-known for its bold, abstract, and often grotesque or nightmarish imagery. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Bacon_%28painter%29 [Mar 2006]

Francis Bacon : The Logic of Sensation (1981) - Gilles Deleuze

Francis Bacon : The Logic of Sensation (1981) - Gilles Deleuze [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Gilles Deleuze had several paintings by Francis Bacon hanging in his Paris apartment, and the painter’s method and style as well as his motifs of seriality, difference, and repetition influenced Deleuze’s work. This first English translation shows us one of the most original and important French philosophers of the twentieth century in intimate confrontation with one of that century’s most original and important painters.

In considering Bacon, Deleuze offers implicit and explicit insights into the origins and development of his own philosophical and aesthetic ideas, ideas that represent a turning point in his intellectual trajectory. First published in French in 1981, Francis Bacon has come to be recognized as one of Deleuze’s most significant texts in aesthetics. Anticipating his work on cinema, the baroque, and literary criticism, the book can be read not only as a study of Bacon’s paintings but also as a crucial text within Deleuze’s broader philosophy of art.

In it, Deleuze creates a series of philosophical concepts, each of which relates to a particular aspect of Bacon’s paintings but at the same time finds a place in the “general logic of sensation.” Illuminating Bacon’s paintings, the nonrational logic of sensation, and the act of painting itself, this work—presented in lucid and nuanced translation—also points beyond painting toward connections with other arts such as music, cinema, and literature. Francis Bacon is an indispensable entry point into the conceptual proliferation of Deleuze’s philosophy as a whole.

Daniel W. Smith teaches in the Department of Philosophy at Purdue University.

In Camera--Francis Bacon: Film, Photography, and the Practice of Painting (2005) - Martin Harrison

In Camera--Francis Bacon: Film, Photography, and the Practice of Painting (2005) - Martin Harrison [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Book Description
An exploration of the interplay between photography and painting in the work of Francis Bacon.

Francis Bacon famously found inspiration in photographs, film stills, and mass-media imagery. This book draws on a broad range of source images and documents, many hitherto unknown, to reveal how these media informed some of Bacon's most important paintings and helped to trigger significant turning points in his stylistic development.

Martin Harrison locates Bacon's work in a tradition of artists making use of mechanical reproductions, including Picasso and Walter Sickert. Harrison also reviews Bacon's painting in the context of key influences: film directors such as Sergei Eisenstein, photographers such as Eadweard Muybridge and John Deakin, and masters such as Velázquez, Poussin, and Rodin. In addition, Bacon's work is considered in the context of his contemporaries, including Lucian Freud, Mark Rothko, Graham Sutherland, and Patrick Heron.

Analysis of elements of Bacon's biography and psychology leads to some startling and original insights into the man and the unique iconography of his art. With the aid of over 260 superb illustrations and the advantage of privileged access to unpublished material from the artist's archives, this is a book that addresses important questions about Bacon's practice and that, in reassessing key paintings, sheds new light on his life and work. 265 illustrations in color and duotone.

About the Author
Martin Harrison is an authority on postwar photography and art whose previous books include Transition: The London Art Scene in the Fifties and Young Meteors: British Photojournalism 1957-1965.

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