painter of Irish birth. Francis Bacon came to
London in 1925 and although he received no formal
art training, he created a sensation in 1945
when he exhibited his Three Studies for Figures
at the Base of a Crucifixion (London, Tate Gallery)
at the Lefevre Gallery in London. His work was
Expressionist in style, and his distorted human
forms were unsettling.
He developed his personal style and gloomy subject
matter during the 1950s, when he achieved an
international reputation. Aside from his unpleasant
images of corrupt and disgusting humanity, Bacon
deliberately subverted artistic conventions
by using the triptych format of Renaissance
altarpieces to show the evils of man, rather
than the virtues of Christ. In Pope Innocent
X he reworked a famous portrait by Velazquez
into a screaming mask of angst."
From "The Bulfinch Guide to Art History"