Francis Bacon - Study for Portrait,1949
Oil on canvas
Gift of Joseph and Jory Shapiro
This portrait of a man screaming in the middle of a transparent cage is astoundingly true to life. The expression of anguish is heightened by the contrast between the yellow ocher light and the threatening shadow that surrounds it. While many see it as a prefiguration of Eichmann’s trial (Jerusalem 1961), the cage above all serves to focus the viewer’s eyes on the gaping hole of the mouth, an obsessive motif for the artist. The violence of the scream underlines the solitude of the human existence.
Biography of the artist :
Dublin 28 October 1909 – Madrid 28 April 1992