Francis Bacon Studio Display Cases: Art and Artists

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Like his commissioning photographs of friends which allowed him to paint at a distance from his subject, some of Bacon's most significant work was based on reproductions of work by other artists. He declared to being 'obsessed' with Velazquez's masterpiece Portrait of Pope Innocent X and many reproductions of this and other works by Velazquez, Michelangelo and Rembrandt were found among the items in his studio. Bacon played up the role that accident and chance had in his painting and, with reproductions of paintings scattered on the floor, he was receptive to radically new representative possibilities made as a result of reproductions being walked on or overpainted. In other instances his manipulation of the material by folding and creasing it was deliberate and intentional.