Confronting Francis Bacon: A Modest Proposal




Taylor, Kent G.

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In this thesis I intend to examine Francis Bacon's works based on contemporary theories of carnal aesthetics and the trauma of abjection, which have opened new channels for understanding Bacon's work. At the same time, this new understanding forces one to reconsider the theoretical iconic treatments by sociologists and historians, Gilles Deleuze, Kent Brintnall, and Georges Bataille, which have been overextended for clarifying Bacon's work. Close and explicit interpretations of Bacon's art itself will suggest alternative and unorthodox ways Bacon transcended his traditional triptych format while bringing perspective to the death of George Dyer in 1971. It also reveals an appreciation of the mystical in Bacon's work, as informed by concepts of abjection and the atomization of social structure introduced by Julia Kristeva.


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Bacon, Francis, Carnal aesthetics, Abjection, Kristeva, Julia, Dyer, George



Art and Art History