230309: Museo Nacional del Prado: Francis Bacon

Museo Nacional del Prado: Francis Bacon Premier with a master There was a lengthy discussion if the Prado Museum was allowed to present a contemporary artist or not. Until now Picasso’s year of birth, 1881, was the benchmark: artists born before were shown at the Prado, those born later were presented at the Reina Sofia Museum for Modern Art. Prado-director Miguel Zugaza had originally planned to show works by Miquel Bareló in the new exhibitions halls of the Prado, but plans changed in favour of Francis Bacon. Whoever expected a special dialogue between Bacon’s works and those of famous Spanish artists such as Velazquez, Goya and Picasso, will be disappointed. On the occasion of Bacon’s 100th birthday, the retrospective was jointly organized between the Tate Britain and the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art and shows 62 works dated from 1945 to 1991. The chronological order is divided into ten themes. Bacon’s strong tie to Madrid, where he died in April 1992, had close connections to love and art. The Juan March foundation merely devoted a small exhibit to the artist in 1978. The intensity of the exhibition at the Prado is overwhelming: it touches, disturbs, makes one concerned, even angry (when looking at the paralyzed girl on hands and knees), arouses admiration and stirs up. Surely no visitor is left untouched by this panorama of suffering souls and screaming bodies, to which the colourfulness and intimacy are only in a seeming contradiction. The paintings, ranging from the early war work, “Figure in a landscape” (1945), which one would not attribute to Bacon or “Jet of Water” (1988), over numerous triptychs, inspired by T.S. Elliot’s poem “Sweeney Agonists” (1967), the portraits, to his last self portrait created in 1991, show the brutal, radical, drastic, destructive world of the artist. The insight into the material of his studio allows one to surmise into how much detail Bacon went. One triptych from 1983 from Juan Abelló’s collection is exclusively presented in Madrid. It did not travel to London and will not fly to New York, where the retrospective will be presented as of May. by Clementine Kügler Museo Nacional del Prado 28014 Madrid, Paseo Prado, until 19.04.09 http:/museoprado.mcu.es

Museo Nacional del Prado
28014 Madrid, Paseo Prado
Tel: +34 91 330 28 00
Email: museo.nacional@museodelprado.es
Öffnungszeiten: Mo-Sa 10-20h, So & Feiertage 10-19h

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