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  • Ray Monde

The colours of Bacon haunt me even now

Woman emptying a bucket of water / paralytic child walking on all fours

Francis Bacon Five Decades is in it’s last few weeks at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. It closes on 24 Feb and I absolutely jubilant for having been able to see it.

I had always thought his works as cloyingly macabre, deliberately masticating figures for the joy of it. But seeing them in person, completely changed my view of his work.

For a start, his colours are startling and compelling, the beautiful oranges and lilacs completely took me by surprise.

Then there’s the incredible texture of his work, which you get no sense of in print images.

In some places, paint is laid on so thick you want to eat it, in others the bare canvas is exposed, then there’s textures created by dragging the canvas on things and painting with things like corduroy and dust. Just crazy, but amazing.

I also love how he tore and folded images to help create his works and relied on a huge body of inspirational movement images such as Eadward Muybridge’s Animal Locomotion.

Really great and a powerful call to take up the brushes!

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