Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Study after Velazquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent X Painting

"Study after Velazquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent X Painting" was a painted by Francis Bacon in 1953, oil on canvas, 60in. by 4-in. It was his version of the painting below "Portrait of Pope Innocent X" by Diego Velazquez in 1650. Bacon did over 45 pieces around this one painting in a series he did over roughly a decade. When Bacon was once asked why he painted this painting so obsessively he said he wanted "an excuse to use these colors, and you can't give ordinary clothes that purple color without getting into a sort of false fauve manner." Bacon was a figurative painter whom typically painted dark, rough images with splashes of color. He often depicted figures contained in cages or other restrictive imagery. In this painting the Pope seems to be contained in curtains or something.  His work always manages to give me the chills. His work is consistently dark, oppressive and depressive, and his figures are either completely deformed or look like they are in agony. I don't know what to think to be honest.

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