Milan Kundera and others on Francis Bacon

Writers and critics reflect on the Irish painter's work
Rudolf Stingel painting a Francis Bacon triptych in his own way in 'Untitled' (2007)'
'In painting, we always leave in too much that is habit, we never eliminate enough...'

Francis Bacon
Issue 14 of the online magazine Tate Etc. features an interesting retrospective piece on painter Francis Bacon. The article takes snippets and observations of Bacon's work from a number of prominent and not-so-prominent artists, writers and academics.

Milan Kundera features prominently, and explores Bacon's work through an opposition to that of fellow Dubliner Samuel Beckett. (As you can imagine, this caught my attention immediately.) Bacon was famously reluctant to align himself with Beckett's austere artistic approach, preferring the cut and thrust of colour and sensation, but Kundera teases out some connections nonetheless. There's even a little Shakespeare thrown into the mix.

There is also a superb aside from Rudolf Stingel, a contemporary artist who has attempted to recreate a Francis Bacon painting (see above) in his own artistic style. It seems to me that little but the colour palette has changed in Stingel's interpretation, but being a fan of grey tones and hues I'm not going to complain. In general, I think it's a little presumptuous to explicitly reinterpret the work of someone else, but if I'm honest there's something about this example that I rather like.

You can read the complete article, which is illustrated throughout with Francis Bacon's paintings, by clicking here.