the rigorous m

bits and bobs, quotes and catching up

quotes: sylvester on bacon’s mouths

Posted by rigorousm on April 18, 2011


Was it Bacon’s intention that the open mouths should sometimes not seem to be screaming? When I put the question to him, he said that some were not. ‘You could say that a scream is a horrific image; in fact, I wanted to paint the scream more than the horror. I think if I had really thought about what causes somebody to scream it would have made the scream that I tried to paint more successful…. In fact they were too abstract. I’ve always been very moved by the movements of the mouth and the shape of the mouth and the teeth. People say that these have all sorts of sexual implications … I like, you may say,the glitter and colour that comes from the mouth, and I’ve always hoped in a sense to be able to paint the mouth like Monet painted a sunset.’

“A late starter” pp 29-30. Looking back at Francis Bacon – David Sylvester


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