Friday, January 11, 2008

Art is Artificial

"Dog I" 1952

Went to the Contemporary last night to see the Swiss documentary "Francis Bacon: Paintre Anglais" with a discussion led by Larry Anderson. Through the filmed interview, Bacon proceeded to get more and more red faced tipsy, starting with wine at lunch and ending the night with cocktails in a London casino. Bacon's blunt and witty opinions on painting, art, the body, and beauty were both funny and thought provoking. I left the film wishing Bacon were still around to be my drinking buddy.

About the painting above (Painting, 1946) Bacon said he intended for it to be a bird falling into a field of grass but it ended up a bit darker. A couple of my favorite quotes:

"If someone likes my painting it is the greatest condemnation"

"My painting is not an illustration but a concentration of reality."

"Art is artificial - more artificial the better."

"Life becomes a desert around you as you grow old."

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