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    Bacon by le Brocquy is a feature lot at Bonhams first dedicated Irish art sale in London on February 9.

    Bacon by le Brocquy. (click to enlarge)

    An evocative portrait of Francis Bacon by Ireland’s foremost living artist, Louis le Brocquy, is estimated at £60,000 to £80,000.  Bonhams reckon the watercolour is one of the most significant lots to feature in the New Bond Street sale.

    Louis le Brocquy is on record as saying: “Contrary to a generally held view, I think that painting is not in any direct sense a means of communication or a means of self-expression. When you are painting you are trying to discover, to uncover, to reveal. I sometimes think of the activity of painting as a kind of archaeology – an archaeology of the spirit.”
    le Brocquy painted his friend Francis Bacon several times.  He set out to capture “the Baconness of Bacon”. The example at Bonham’s Irish sale is more representational than most.
    Penny Day, Head of Irish Art at Bonhams, says: “It is rare to find an image that combines the names and reputations of two giants of British and Irish art, in this instance as artist and sitter”.
    The worldwide reputation of Francis Bacon, who was born in Ireland, has grown steadily since his death in 1992. His South Kensington Studio has been re-constructed at the Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin using the original door, walls, floors, ceiling and shelves. Over 7,000 items were catalogued on a specially designed database before their replacement.
    See post for September 15

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