Francis Bacon, “Figure Reflected in Mirror”, 1977, Color Etching on Arches Paper, 36.5 x 27 Inches
Francis Bacon was an Irish-born British figurative painter known for his emotionally charged raw imagery. He produced series of images of popes, crucifixions, and portraits of close friends, with abstracted figures sometimes isolated in geometrical cages, set against flat, nondescript backgrounds.
Bacon said that he saw images ‘in series’; and his work typically focuses on a single subject for sustained periods, often in diptych or triptych formats. His work which numbers almost six hundred paintings, including some he destroyed, can be described as variations on single motifs. These include the 1930s ‘Furies’ and the bio-morphs influenced by Picasso; the 1940s male heads in rooms; the 1950s screaming popes, the later 1950s animals and lone figures,;the crucifixions done in the 1960s; the later 1960s portraits of friends; the sea-portraits in the 1970s; and the more technical 1980s paintings with the cooler palettes.