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Emanuele Alberto Cirello

Emanuele Alberto Cirello


Total Article : 76

About Me:I am a Year 13 student which aspires to be an architect. I am interested in anything I don't yet know, and I mostly write about art, politics , Italian culture and inspirational people, although I will try to write for as many categories possible, just to test myself and get to know more things.

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Francis Bacon: "Study of George Dyer"

Francis Bacon: "Study of George Dyer"

“Study of George Dyer” is a painting made during the artist’s period in New York, in 1970. It depicts the artist’s lover and partner George Dyer and is an oil painting on canvas.

The painting has a landscape format and its dominant feature is the figure of George Dyer, which occupies most of the pictorial space. There is no visible focal point, even though the viewer’s eyes are directed towards the figure. The composition of the painting lacks of symmetry and also lacks of a central axis, due to the figure’s profile being depicted on ¾ of the canvas. There are no dominant shapes, as the distortion of Dyer’s face is very homogeneous and fluid. This created a feeling of movement, which has been possible to portray through the use of curvilinear forms. The image is also closed, as it is contained within its frame and there are no other elements in the composition. The portrait seems to be cropped, and this makes it possible to focus only on the distorted face.

The colours are not as vivid as the ones used in “Study of Lucian Freud”, and they seem to be very rough as the texture of the painting is quite coarse. The palette which Bacon has used is again very limited, as he has only focused on specific tones and colours. They are somewhat descriptive, but at the same time they seem to appear far away from reality. The colours used vary from pink, purple, orange, white and black. Therefore the colours are very warm, and shades of colours are applied. The colours are blended, and this creates the distortion of the subject, and therefore the dynamical feel.

As in “Study of Lucian Freud” there is a lack of depth in the painting, which in general really lacks of pictorial space. There is no illusion of three dimensional space as only the figure of Dyer is depicted. This means that there is a lack of perspective and foreshortening. The background is monotonic, and painted with a pale shade of pink.

Light is used to highlight the profile of the subject. The light hits frontally Dyer’s face, and therefore the light source isn’t shown in the painting. The light creates strong contrasts of shadows, or chiaroscuro, which is visibly shown in some areas which are painted in full black. The gradation between light and dark is not subtle, and this helps with the creation of depth in the figure of the subject.

The form is not very three-dimensional, although the characteristics of the portrait make the subject have solidity, and its composition seems quite sculptural. The forms in this painting are soft and curved like in most of the artist’s works and the complete form can be seen fully, as light and shadow do not obliterate it.

This work is seemingly different from “Study of Lucian Freud”. It looks more mature, and as I have said in the previous analysis, the progression of the artist’s life, and the experiences coming from such progression, have changed the artist in his own self, and this change is visible in his work, as they get messier and more distorted as the years go by. This proves that transformation of oneself is reflected onto a response, and in the case of “Study of George Dyer”, the turbulent relationship with Dyer has psychologically affected the artist, and hence the continuous transformation shown in his art is the reflection of a more deep emotional transformation which has taken place over time.

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