five decades

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Three studies for a self-portrait, 1979–80 Oil On Canvas Triptych 37.5 × 31.8 Cm Each © Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
five decades

The Domain
NSW 2000 Sydney
November 17th, 2012 - February 24th, 2013
Opening: November 17th, 2012 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

+612 9225 1700
Daily 10-5


His images arrive straight through the nervous system and hijack the soul

The Times, UK

Surveying Francis Bacon’s life and work, this is the first major exhibition in Australia of rare works by the master of post-war British art.

With over 50 paintings – many of them monumental in size – as well as archival material from his studio, films and photographs, the exhibition covers every decade of his career, from the pensive and shocking works of the 1940s to the exuberantly coloured and visceral large paintings of the 1970s and 80s.

As well as the sensual enjoyment of paint, Bacon’s work speaks of violence, from depictions of a screaming pope to crucifixions, animals and carcasses, ancient Greek figures and distorted, emotionally charged portraits of his close friends and lovers. ‘I’ve made images the intellect would never make,’ said the artist.

Curated by the Art Gallery of NSW, the exhibition has been four years in the making, with works drawn from private collections and Australian and international institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Tate Britain in London, the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and the Francis Bacon Estate.

It will be accompanied by a full-colour, illustrated book and an extensive program of events as well as education programs and resources.


$20.00 adult
$15.00 concession
$12.00 member
$10.00 child (5-17 years)
$50.00 family (2 adults + up to 3 children)
$40.00/$30.00 season ticket
$7.00 student in booked school group
Free child under 5