This estimate blends recent public auction records with our own private sale data and network demand.
Signed Print Edition of 100
H 47cm x W 36cm
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Joe Syer, Head of Urban & Contemporary Art
Figure At Wash Basin was created by Francis Bacon in 1976. This signed print of the work is an aquatint and is part of an edition size of 100. The piece explores the artist’s ongoing fascination with the human form. It depicts an ambiguous figure hunched over a wash basin full of water. The composition is typical of Bacon’s art as the action is at the centre and the surrounding structure is rather geometrical in form, framing the central figuration.
The figure looks almost machinist as the limbs and bones appear hinged together. The biomorphic depiction of the human body is a common style throughout Bacon’s work where geometric shapes and abstraction of the human form meet deeply embodied depictions with intense emotional evocations. Here, a bleak scene is created as a body writhes over the sink as if they are vomiting. This could be inspired by the death of Bacon’s partner, George Dyer. Dyer overdosed on pills and alcohol and was known to have vomited in a sink moments prior as Bacon watched from the bedroom next door.
Black blinds are positioned directly behind the figure and the basin, framing the action and blocking out the light of a window. The bleak palette consists of murky yellows, greys, blues and a blood red block that the figure is perched upon. A thick white arrow is found on top of the black structure pointing towards the body. Similar arrows found in other works by Bacon such as Study Of The Human Body From A Drawing By Ingres (1982) are said to bring a formality to the abstracted forms. Bacon took inspiration from police photographs and golfing magazines showing the direction of ball flight with these arrows.