FRANCIS BACON 1909-1992
Dublin 1909-1992 Madrid (Irish / British)
Title: Study from the Human Body, 1981
Technique: Original Hand Signed and Numbered Lithograph in Colours on Arches Wove Paper
Paper size: 45 x 33 cm. / 17.7 x 13 in.
Additional Information: This lithograph in colours is hand signed in pencil by the artist “Francis Bacon” at the lower right margin.
It is also hand numbered in pencil from the edition of 150, at the lower left margin.
This work is one of 150 signed and numbered impressions. There were a further 25 hors commerce [out of trade] proofs.
It was printed by Arts Litho, Paris and published by Èditions de La Différence, Paris.
The paper bears the printer’s blindstamp in the lower left image.
This work is based on the same titled painting realised in July 1981.
Note: The specific three-quarter rear view of the figure in Study from the Human Body was first essayed by Bacon in a panel intended for Triptych – Studies from the Human Body (1970) but later destroyed by the artist. In the destroyed canvas the intersection of the body is similarly performed by a mirror; the mirror image was triggered by the double opening door in Marcel Duchamp’s Paris apartment, a photograph of which was reproduced in Arturo Schwarz’s catalogue raisonni of Duchamp (1969).
The light-switch in the present work also resembles a key, a recurrent Bacon motif which he himself traced to Picasso’s paintings of the late-1920s, with their obvious Freudian phallic connotations: for Bacon, keys and light-switches became virtually interchangeable, and the man in Study from the Human Body may equally be read as unlocking a door, or barrier.
Bacon preferred to paint by daylight, but he also famously worked under a naked light-bulb in his Reece Mews studio: he moved there in 1961, and light-bulbs entered his iconography in 1964. He painted his first vertical trunking connected to a light-switch in Self-Portrait (1973; Private Collection),
1. Tacou, A. (2008). Francis Bacon: Estampes – Collection Alexandre Tacou. Paris: Bervillé Éditions.
Reference: Tacou 36
2. Sabatier, B. (2012). Francis Bacon: Oeuvre Graphique – The Graphic Work: Catalogue Raisonné. Paris: JSC Modern Art Gallery.
Reference: Sabatier 28
Condition: Excellent condition.