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Francis Bacon's Portraits


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I don't know that Pierre Girieud will ultimately be a Baconian treasure, but I will say that Bacon appears to introduce us. he knew how to paint Bacon at least.

http://www.pierregirieud.fr/index_gb.php#

Interesting artist. He has an eye for beauty for certain, and to me appears well versed in the ancients.

http://www.pierregirieud.fr/f_rech_fresque.php?page=

Art Plastique and Art Dramatique

image.png.caa3b7dbeb220dd334120228afde6edf.png

Les Sciences

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EDIT:

Lots of images on this page below. I suspect only Yann could see anything important. I'm enjoying looking though...

http://www.pierregirieud.fr/f_rech_compo.php?page=

 

Edited by Light-of-Truth
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1 hour ago, Light-of-Truth said:

Hi Rob, this page relates the history of the paintings that I shared with you briefly earlier and talks about 9 paintings that are still missing.

Indeed, in 1930 the University of Poitiers commissioned an ensemble from Pierre Girieud, comprising fifteen paintings intended to adorn the Council Chamber of the University at the Faculty of Law:

- Five large panels: one entitled "To the glory of the University of Poitiers", built in triptych, and four representing the historical disciplines of the University (Law, Letters, Medicine and Sciences)
- Two small monochrome canvases that accompany the monument to the dead of the First World War created by the Martel Brothers: "La France Douloureuse" and "La France Glorieuse"
- Eight paintings, installed in the recesses between each window, representing naked figures which symbolize the "Pedagogical Virtues": Vocation, Self-denial, Faith, Invention, Experience, Meditation, Truth and Study .

The original paintings of "La France Douloureuse" and "La France Glorieuse", as well as seven of the eight "Pedagogical Virtues" are still missing.

 

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2 hours ago, Light-of-Truth said:

image.png.24cba1047a10b0d08fae1653a4402a8f.png

 

Hi Rob,

Once again, this is just a thought and I don't know if it was really intended by Pierre Girieud, but you can see, on the left of the painting, that the Cat is playing with a Sole.

The Sole reminds me the famous stylized LetterS that is found in Francis Bacon's Essays (1625)

image.png.c476aaaf72e9c25d0df525015843c4bf.png

SOLE/SOUL

And I wonder if the Franciscan monk could be Roger Bacon.

I know ... I have a great imagination ! 😄

Edited by Allisnum2er
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3 hours ago, Allisnum2er said:

Hi Rob,

Once again, this is just a thought and I don't know if it was really intended by Pierre Girieud, but you can see, on the left of the painting, that the Cat is playing with a Sole.

The Sole reminds me the famous stylized LetterS that is found in Francis Bacon's Essays (1625)

image.png.c476aaaf72e9c25d0df525015843c4bf.png

SOLE/SOUL

And I wonder if the Franciscan monk could be Roger Bacon.

I know ... I have a great imagination ! 😄

image.png.6eee3b81d8fb909220a0d31b11cc95b6.png

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  • 7 months later...

https://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/bacon-bacon-shakespeare-spy_

Bacon Bacon Shakespeare Spy

One brilliant madwoman’s quest to show that the Bard’s works were secretly penned by the father of science, at war with his own creation

Sam Kahn

I'd not heard of The New Atlantis journal before coming across this article today. (The site seems to have little to do with Francis Bacon, yet they have no hesitation in appropriating the title of his famous Rosicrucian novel.) I was drawn in by the author's sympathetic account of Delia Bacon's crusade, even though he takes a conventional stand on the authorship question. Reading down the page I came to this illustration.

ScreenShot2023-08-14at8_39_57pm.png.ca5b926808a1a879a9519ec2610a5c1a.png

The picture's proper title is "Portrait of a Young Man". It's in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston - not New York Public Library. Painted by Domenico Tintoretto (son of the renowned Venetian master, Jacopo Tintoretto) between 1580-1585, the picture didn't arrive in England until the early-19th century. So it cannot possibly be a portrait of the young Francis Bacon... unless, as has been suggested by a number of Baconians, he was travelling in Italy and elsewhere on the Continent during the early 1580s, and sat for Domenico Tintoretto in Venice. So it's just possible, but much more likely to be a young Italian nobleman. I'm not sure how the tenuous association of this picture with Francis Bacon began.

https://collections.mfa.org/objects/32299

image.png.3125f115a5fb40a1cf623ef1a6dda473.png

 

Edited by Eric Roberts
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  • 1 month later...

You think you know a painting, having looked at it umpteen times, but as I was looking through the National Portrait Gallery's portraits of Francis Bacon I came across Henry Bone's plan for a copy of Paul van Somer's full-length portrait as Lord Chancellor of England in 1618. The drawing is undated, presumed to have been made sometime "before 1815", when Bone visited Gorhambury. Although the NPG attribute the work as "after Unknown artist", Henry Bone himself has written at the bottom of the page: The Lord Chancellor Bacon after the original by Vansommer in the collection of Lord Verulam. Signed "B".

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_29_11pm.png.e9d325ad0f7215303d04ca6c4122711b.png

Although I'd seen this scaled drawing before, I'd not paid attention to the detail of the robe Bacon is wearing. Why did Bone embellish the black robe we see in Van Somer's painting with stylised organic forms?

image.png.97bd27fb0dcc92eebdaddd5122de0c49.png

Had Henry taken too much laudanum that morning? What's with all the floral embroidery? But as we can see from Bone's beautiful enamel reduced copy of the Gorhambury Van Somer painting, it's obvious that he was a highly trained professional copyist. He would have only recorded what he could see. Imagination was not involved.

http://historicalportraits.com/Gallery.asp?Page=Item&ItemID=853&Desc=Sir-Francis-Bacon-|-Henry-Bone

If we take a closer look at the Van Somer portrait, it's just possible to make out black on black designs which correspond to Henry Bone's notes. I had no idea that the black robe was so ornately decorated with a 'jungle' of leaves and flowers of all kinds. It would be so wonderful if Francis Bacon's Chancellor's robe had survived and we could see it first-hand in the British Museum.

http://historicalportraits.com/Gallery.asp?Page=Item&ItemID=853&Desc=Sir-Francis-Bacon-|-Henry-Bone

https://sirbacon.org/francis-bacons-portraits-from-life/#!enviragallery4980-5231

image.png.97bd27fb0dcc92eebdaddd5122de0c49.png

 

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_30_35pm.png.025ad452e45883a4a203d224c9f49472.png

 

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_32_02pm.png.c0337e8a85671869190ac7260299771e.png

I would assume that his robe was made for him to his specifications, in which case, the choice of an almost subliminal design which is both concealed and revealed is appropriate.

 

Edited by Eric Roberts
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46 minutes ago, Eric Roberts said:

You think you know a painting, having looked at it umpteen times, but as I was looking through the National Portrait Gallery's portraits of Francis Bacon I came across Henry Bone's plan for a copy of Paul van Somer's full-length portrait as Lord Chancellor of England in 1618. The drawing is undated, presumed to have been made sometime "before 1815", when Bone visited Gorhambury. Although the NPG attribute the work as "after Unknown artist", Henry Bone himself has written at the bottom of the page: The Lord Chancellor Bacon after the original by Vansommer in the collection of Lord Verulam. Signed "B".

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_29_11pm.png.e9d325ad0f7215303d04ca6c4122711b.png

Although I'd seen this scaled drawing before, I'd not paid attention to the detail of the robe Bacon is wearing. Why did Bone embellish the black robe we see in Van Somer's painting with stylised organic forms?

image.png.97bd27fb0dcc92eebdaddd5122de0c49.png

Had Henry taken too much laudanum that morning? What's with all the floral embroidery? But as we can see from Bone's beautiful enamel reduced copy of the Gorhambury Van Somer painting, it's obvious that he was a highly trained professional copyist. He would have only recorded what he could see. Imagination was not involved.

http://historicalportraits.com/Gallery.asp?Page=Item&ItemID=853&Desc=Sir-Francis-Bacon-|-Henry-Bone

If we take a closer look at the Van Somer portrait, it's just possible to make out black on black designs which correspond to Henry Bone's notes. I had no idea that the black robe was so ornately decorated with leaves of all kinds. It would be so wonderful if Francis Bacon's Chancellor's robe had survived and we could see it first-hand in the British Museum.

http://historicalportraits.com/Gallery.asp?Page=Item&ItemID=853&Desc=Sir-Francis-Bacon-|-Henry-Bone

https://sirbacon.org/francis-bacons-portraits-from-life/#!enviragallery4980-5231

image.png.97bd27fb0dcc92eebdaddd5122de0c49.png

 

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_30_35pm.png.025ad452e45883a4a203d224c9f49472.png

 

ScreenShot2023-09-16at9_32_02pm.png.c0337e8a85671869190ac7260299771e.png

I would assume that his robe was made for him to his specifications, in which case, the choice of an almost subliminal design which both concealed and revealed is appropriate.

 

 

Courtesy of Philip Mould Gallery website: Enamel portrait of Sir Francis Bacon by Henry Bone c.1815

BaconbyBonebefore1815(enamel).jpeg.09bc446d779fe860f159c4dffd1d402d.jpeg

 

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On 8/14/2023 at 7:28 AM, Eric Roberts said:

and sat for Domenico Tintoretto in Venice.

I see the sorrow of a late teen Bacon who was living an identity nightmare, "Who is my Mother, and my Father?? If this is a painting of Bacon it captures what so many of us go through in life and that emotion was meant to be known.

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1 hour ago, Light-of-Truth said:

I see the sorrow of a late teen Bacon who was living an identity nightmare, "Who is my Mother, and my Father?? If this is a painting of Bacon it captures what so many of us go through in life and that emotion was meant to be known.

image.png.2de76be110ffcd79a853c8edfd7e97b9.png

The young man in the portrait looks to me to be still in his teens. Bacon was in his early twenties when, as has been suggested, he travelled incognito on the Continent in the early 1580s. Wrong mouth. You're right though L-o-T, it could be the cover of a book on adolescence and anxiety.

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9 minutes ago, Eric Roberts said:

Wrong mouth.

That was my first thought. Then I looked at the emotion and Bacon fit to me, at least this past week or so. 😉

Bacon would have looked much older in his twenties. And he would have learned how to hide his pain by then. It would take quite the artist to Pierce that Veil.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

FRANCIS BACON'S HAT

 

https://sirbacon.org/gallery/baconhat.html

Beaver Hats and 17th Century English Society

At this time, (1600s) the North American trade in beaver pelts had not begun in earnest.  Hatters were dependent on the near extinct supply of European beaver from the northern most parts of Russia and Scandinavia.   The resultant high expense meant that beaver hats were extremely costly and generally worn only by the wealthiest of classes.

https://humwp.ucsc.edu/cwh/feinstein/Beaver Hats and 17th Century English Society.html

 

(beaver hat courtesy of www.pilgrimhall.org)

 

A Brief History of the Beaver Trade

https://humwp.ucsc.edu/cwh/feinstein/A brief history of the beaver trade.html

It has been suggested that it was in Constantinople that wool felting techniques were first applied to beaver fur. From there, knowledge of felting spread north, to Russia, along trade routes.  J. F. Crean suggests that wool felting likely spread to western Europe after the sack of Kiev by the Tarters in 1240, when artisans fled west.  However, beaver felting  techniques did not diffuse westward, and the beaver felting industry  remained centralized in Russia until the late 17th century. With a monopoly on both supply and industry, the Russians developed and refined techniques for processing beaver fur.  Essential to the felting process was a step known as combing, which separated the beaver's guard hairs from the downy under wool that was desired for felts.  The careful guarding of this trade secret helped to maintain the Russian monopoly. 

From the above we can only postulate that the beavers from which SFB's hat was made probably came from Russia, and was very expensive.

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59 minutes ago, Eric Roberts said:

At this time, (1600s) the North American trade in beaver pelts had not begun in earnest.  Hatters were dependent on the near extinct supply of European beaver from the northern most parts of Russia and Scandinavia.

The French were bringing beaver pelts back from America before 1600 it appears:

https://www.gutenberg.org/files/68540/68540-h/68540-h.htm#III

About page 33:

The fishing barques from St. Malo, from Dieppe, Rouen, La Rochelle and Havre, kept coming to America’s northern coasts every summer, hundreds of them. They fished for cod on the banks, hunted walrus in the great gulf, and caught whales in the lower parts of the St. Lawrence River. Always, wherever they were, the mariners drove an ever increasing trade with the Indians for valuable pelts. Over the sides of their ships and on shore they bartered for marten, otter, fox and beaver.

Commerce flourished to such an extent through this individual enterprise that ships’ captains frequently found it profitable to turn all hands to bartering for pelts. It was a French vessel in 1569 at Cape Breton whose master drove a “trade with the people of divers sortes of fine furs” that picked up the Englishmen,[Pg 33] David Ingram and his two companions, Richard Browne and Richard Twide. Along with a large number of others these three had been abandoned ashore following the defeat of their famous leader, John Hawkins, the slaver, in a piratical engagement in the Caribbean with the Spaniards. Ingram and his two friends, however, struck out into the Florida wilderness, “crossed the River May,” and for twelve months beat their hazardous way northward through lands never before trod by white men, until they reached Cape Breton. They reported seeing “plentie of fine furres” along the way.

Gradually the traffic in furs moved inland via the St. Lawrence as occasional traders, adopting the native mode of travel by canoe, braved the wilderness for choicer pelts. There being no soldiers or forts to fall back on, these traders, born of the fishing fleets, found it expedient to treat the Indians well. The Montagnais and the Algonkins, who had been hostile since Cartier’s last visit, reciprocated in kind. So did the Hurons, eventually. They were all hopeful of allies with fire guns to help them against their powerful enemies, the recently formed league of the Five Nations of the Iroquois, who inhabited parts of the St. Lawrence valley in the west and the country to the south.

In 1581 a French bark, sent out exclusively for fur by the merchants of St. Malo, pushed into the upper St. Lawrence. The profits of this venture were so spectacular that organized bulk traffic got under way immediately between France and the St. Lawrence valley.

Within three years Richard Hakluyt, the English geographer, was writing, “And nowe our neighboures, the men of St. Maloe in Brytaine, in the begynnyinge of Auguste laste paste, of this yere 1584 are come home with five shippes from Canada and the contries upp the Bay of St. Lawrence, and have broughte twoo of the people of the contrie home, and have founde suche swete in the newe trade that they are preparinge tenne shippes to returne thither in January nexte....”

Almost overnight New France became noted for its valuable export of pelts, especially beaver. Hakluyt, writing from Paris about this time, said that in one man’s house he had seen Canadian otter and beaver to the value of five thousand crowns.

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Hi everyone,

Can it be another piece of the puzzle ?

 I was looking at engravings by Simon de Passe, and I have just learned that he used the same plate for Francis Bacon (Lord Keeper of the Great Seal from 1617 to 1620)

https://www.rct.uk/collection/680621/francis-bacon

... and Thomas Coventry ( Lord Keeper of the Great Seal from 1625 to 1640).

https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw77732/Thomas-Coventry-1st-Baron-Coventry?LinkID=mp08122&role=art&displayStyle=thumb&displayNo=60&rNo=58

But this is not the case with John Williams who was Lord keeper of the Great Seal from 1621 to 1625.

I wondered if it could hide something, if "Coventry" could be important, and here is what I have just  found 😊...

The Coventry Mysteries and Shakespeare's Histories 

https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1005&context=early_drama

"The nineteenth-century antiquarian Thomas Sharp reported in his 1825 monograph Dissertation on the Pageants or Dramatic Mysteries Anciently Performed at Coventry that as late as1565 Sir John Throgmorton, the Recorder of Coventry, welcomed Queen Elizabeth I with the explanation that “this auncient Citie hath bine of longe tyme called the princes Chamber the iijde Citie of youre Realme.”

Joy !

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3 hours ago, Allisnum2er said:

I was looking at engravings by Simon de Passe, and I have just learned that he used the same plate for Francis Bacon (Lord Keeper of the Great Seal from 1617 to 1620)

https://www.rct.uk/collection/680621/francis-bacon

... and Thomas Coventry ( Lord Keeper of the Great Seal from 1625 to 1640).

https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw77732/Thomas-Coventry-1st-Baron-Coventry?LinkID=mp08122&role=art&displayStyle=thumb&displayNo=60&rNo=58

17th Century AI tricks! 🙂

image.png.3c07befa3e7b00face49225b8020b1f0.png

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  • 3 weeks later...

ScreenShot2023-10-21at12_40_26am.png.15d82325621c016af504afd0798f7667.png

 

This is the first full-scale, formal portrait in oils that Francis sat for, as far as we know. 1610. By an English painter, Larkin.

Why did he wait until he was nearly fifty to have his portrait made? There is just a hint of a knowing smile. Clear, kind eyes.

Eyes that can't be fooled. Eyes that know so much. Jono should take a long look at this picture and other portraits of SFB

before attempting to impersonate him. No arrogance or smugness please.

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  • 1 month later...

A SELDOM SEEN PORTRAIT OF FRANCIS BACON

BY PAUL VAN SOMER, c. 1618

Raveningham Hall, Norfolk

https://raveningham.com/gardens/

The image below was found by Lawrence Gerald in the catalogue of the Exhibition of Late Elizabethan Art in Conjunction with the Tercentenary of Francis Bacon, organised by the Burlington Fine Arts Club in London in 1926. When I was researching the portraits of Francis Bacon, this picture proved to be too elusive. All I had was a description of it from a catalogue of paintings from stately homes in Norfolk published in 1928.

PortraitsinNorfolkHomes1928-RaveninghamHall.png.223f6f2bd59bb45a7d14b07f4a9168eb.png

Thanks to Lawrence we can now see it for the first time:

RAVENINGHAMVANSOMERc_1618.jpeg.53f7e7b5fa283eed72d885a0e9c29ec0.jpeg

A colour image of the painting has been requested from the owners of the portrait.

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On 10/5/2023 at 10:10 AM, Light-of-Truth said:

17th Century AI tricks! 🙂

image.png.3c07befa3e7b00face49225b8020b1f0.png

Thanks for finding the Simon van der Passe engraving of Thomas Coventry. I think what has happened here is that the artist has re-used his original master drawing for the engraving of SFB by transferring it in reverse onto a new copperplate.  Although this would have saved valuable time in the studio, one wonders how Sir Thomas might have felt on seeing himself dressed in his predecessor's clothes.

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KEEP THIS UNDER YOUR HAT

ScreenShot2023-11-28at6_29_26pm.png.c10b0e88090bc02075085661fcef2bef.png

One can read almost anything into this fathomless face; the ever-so-slight smile; the unmistakable twinkle in both eyes. William Larkin has done a brilliant job of detecting a personality, an identity, which is as much hidden as visible. 

Isolated from the rest of the picture, the 'self' of the sitter as seen by the artist is more apparent.

In a silent way, it is almost as if Sir Francis Bacon is asking us: "Have you guessed the answer to the puzzle yet?"

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  • 3 months later...

Just came across this portrait of FB that is apparently in the Storico Archives at the oldest university in the world, The University of Bologna in Italy est. 1088. Have never seen this painting before and can't seem to find any other details about it. It would seem to be FB later in his life.

Portrait of Francis Bacon (Archivio Storico Università di Bologna, photo Mattei-Zannoni). 

https://www.researchgate.net/figure/Portrait-of-Francis-Bacon-Archivio-Storico-Universita-di-Bologna-photo-Mattei-Zannoni_fig16_279407051

Portrait-of-Francis-Bacon-Archivio-Storico-Universita-di-Bologna-photo-Mattei-Zannoni.png

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