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LaToya Ruby Frazier Featured in NYT

March 3rd, 2021

LaToya Ruby Frazier has a piece in the NYT this week, showcasing new work and talking about her critical approach towards American culture. “I am showing these dark things about America because I love my country and countrymen,” she says. “When you love somebody, you tell them the truth. Even if it hurts.”
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MoMA Covers Architect Philip Johnson’s Name from Wall Signage Over Fascist Views

March 3rd, 2021

MoMA has covered up the name of late architect Philip Johnson on wall signs amid allegations of his fascist views. “To move forward with the exhibition thoughtfully, honoring the communities that the artists and their works represent, we feel it’s appropriate to respect the exhibition design suggestion and cover the signage with Johnson’s name outside the Architecture and Design galleries on an interim basis,” a MoMA spokesperson said. “To confront this matter, the Museum currently has underway a rigorous research initiative to explore in full the allegations against Johnson and gather all available information. This work is ongoing.”
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Italy Looks to Art to Help Combat Overtourism

March 3rd, 2021

Italy is looking to combat its crush of tourists in major cities by leasing works from the Uffizi in Florence to smaller museums and spaces around the country, CNN reports. “We already have over 3,000 works of art on display in the Uffizi — that’s enough,” Uffizi director Eike Schmidt says.
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

Francis Bacon

Francis Bacon

Francis Bacon, image via National Galleries

b. 1909 in Dublin, died 1992 in Madrid

Bacon was considered a modern artist but did not belong to any particular art movement. He developed his own style of work, often creating scenes involving violence or sexuality.

Bacon is an Irish born painter, who is best known for his nightmarish, grotesque imagery.  He lived a tumulus life, constantly moving, being shuffled around to relatives, a strained relationship with his father, menial jobs, and a severe case of asthma and a violent allergy to dogs and horses.  He was never formally trained or attended any art schools.  

His medical conditions caused him to purchase a medical book on the subject matter diseases of the mouth, which contained images that would haunt him for the rest of his life. Bacon noted that the 1925 silent film The Battleship Potemkin, was highly influential on his work.

His first show was in 1929, which exhibited his rugs and furniture he had created while working as an interior designer.  His later works were an abstraction of the human form. 


Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion (1944) via Tate Collection

Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion (1944) would be the first forerunner of Bacon’s works that would take the triptych format.   Three panels placed behind heavily gilded frames, an open mouth a reference to the The Battleship Potemkin, and the use of distortion.  

Study after Velazquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent

Study After Velazquez’s Portrait of Pope Innocent image via Art Quotes

Bacon also became interested in Diego Velasquez’s work, particularly, his Portrait of Pope Innocent X, 1650. Bacon painted a series of Popes, however his version the Pope was more gruesome and nightmarish.


Triptych (1972) via Tate Collection

Bacon destroyed his previous works he did not deem worthy, many ending up with slashed canvases. His relationship with Eastender George Dyer influenced his Triptych (1973), which documents Dyer’s suicide, and would continue to be a theme for his works for the rest of his life. 

Bacon died of a heart attack April 28, 1992 while in Madrid, Spain.