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Posted on 2024-02-28 04:22:16 in EVENTS
Landscape near Malabata, Tangier, 1963 (Cat no. 63-06)


Two of Bacon’s paintings are coming to auction at Christie’s and one is on its way to Sotheby’s. The two at Christie’s are Landscape near Malabata, Tangier, 1963 and Painting March, 1985, ;the painting coming to Sotheby’s is Study of George Dyer, 1970. 


Landscape near Malabata, Tangier, 1963, is up for auction for an estimated GBP 15,000,000 – GBP 20,000,000. It was painted in London a year after Lacy’s death in Tangier. It depicts where he was laid to rest and expresses Bacon’s grief, desire and longing in a simple but powerful manner.


As described by Martin Harrison, author of the Catalogue Raisonné, the work is ‘Bacon’s ultimate, oblique memorial to his lover, and one of his greatest, most impassioned paintings’ (p. 720).


The piece draws from his entire artistic journey, blending elements from early portraits of Peter Lacy with the Van Gogh-inspired paintings of the 1950s, whilst foreshadowing the elliptical arenas and metaphorical landscapes that would characterise his work over the following two decades.


It was owned by the celebrated author Roald Dahl, who purchased several of his masterworks.


Painting March 1985 (Cat no. 85-04)
Painting March 1985 (Cat no. 85-04)


The second painting up for auction is Painting March 1985, which is up for an estimated GBP 4,200,000 – GBP 6,000,000. It captures Bacon’s obsession with Aeschylus’ Oresteia.


In his essay on Painting March 1985, Martin Harrison notes that the work represents ‘one of [Bacon’s] most uncompromising and limpid statements about his obsessions, a defiant assertion of the human spirit in the face of chance and mortality.’


Study of George Dyer, 1970 (Cat no. 70-02)
Study of George Dyer, 1970 (Cat no. 70-02)


Sotheby’s is auctioning the Study of George Dyer, 1970, estimated at 5,000,000 - 7,000,000 GBP. Painted during an era of turmoil in their relationship, this study is a rare piece that immortalises not only his infatuation with his muse Dyer but also his unmistakable artistic style.


This intimate portrait was Bacon’s last portrayal of Dyer before his tragic death in 1971. On the eve of Bacon’s most important exhibition, the retrospective held at the Grand Palais, Dyer overdosed on barbiturates. 

Study of George Dyer, 1970, is an apt counterpart to the "Black Triptychs" of the early and mid-1970s, which serve as poignant memorials to Dyer.


Francis bacon The estate of francis bacon Christie's Sotheby's Auction