Bacon Triptych at the Tate; Centenary Show: Francis Bacon's ?43 Million Triptych, Inspired by Greek Mythology, Is One of 70 Masterpieces in a Retrospective That Opens at Tate Britain on Thursday
Byline: LOUISE JURY
YOU might not be able to pay ?43 million to own a Francis Bacon triptych.
But for the next four months, you can visit Tate Britain and see the three-part work that set a world record for Bacon at auction in New York in May.
The private owner is lending the paintings, inspired by Greek mythology, to the first British retrospective for 23 years.
Although the exhibition will go on to the Prado in Madrid and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, London is the only city where the triptych can be seen.
The loan is one of many from private hands for the exhibition of around 70 masterpieces that marks the centenary of Bacon's birth.
Works depicting the crucifixion from key stages in Bacon's career including his first published work and the first masterpiece of his maturity are being shown together for the first time.
The exhibition also includes the three different triptychs of his lover George Dyer, including the one produced in the outpouring of grief that immediately followed Dyer's suicide in 1971.
Another highlight is the first fulllength painting of a pope one of five in the show which was thought to have been destroyed by the artist but was found rolled up after his death.
All are being exhibited with the first display in Britain of archive material found in his studio that shed new light on his working methods. …