Francis Bacon
Figure Lying, No. 1 c.1957–61

Artwork details

Francis Bacon 1909–1992
Figure Lying, No. 1
Date c.1957–61
Medium Oil paint on paper
Dimensions Support: 340 x 270 mm
Acquisition Purchased with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Art Fund and a group of anonymous donors in memory of Mario Tazzoli 1998
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

These pages almost certainly came at the end of the dismembered sketchbook. They represent the most coherent programme of drawing through which Bacon explored compositional possibilities in a succession of images. The sense of the structure of the body, as well as the degree of abstraction of form, are progressively modified across the 'Crawling Figure' images. They were probably achieved by tracing from one to the other. Although no related oil painting is known to survive, the extent to which the possibilities are explored testifies to the significant role of sketches within Bacon's working process.

September 2004

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