Friday, August 22, 2008

Roman brings home the Bacon

I was interested to learn that Russian tycoon Roman Abramovitch recently spent $86.3 million on a Francis Bacon triptych. Of course that sum of money is a measly amount to Roman, who accumulates football clubs, trophy wives, and super yachts as mere baubles to display on the mantelpiece of his inflated ego.

I wonder what it is about Bacon that attracted Roman. Was it the nihilism? Was it the anguished depictions of the human form as little more than hunks of convoluted meat? Was it the despair at the futility of the human condition? Personally I doubt that it was any of these. When it comes to art I imagine that Roman would much prefer a tableaux of swaddled babushkas cavorting in the Russian snows executed in lurid acrylics.

I doubt that it was even seen as an investment; why invest in genius when commodities dug from the earth might provide a better return? Abramovitch is typical of the new rich: an uneducated, uncultured money grubber with about as much aesthetic vision as a myopic moose. Roman buys a Bacon because he can afford to. He hangs it as he imagines that he can bask in the glow of genius, a man of substance disporting his good taste.

I wouldn't want a Bacon; it's not just that there was more than a whiff of the devil about the man, it's also the horror that he depicts. His vision may have been an appropriate response to the violence and brutality of the twentieth century, but as much as I admire his visceral and startling images I certainly wouldn't want one hanging on my wall.

Call me an ignoramus if you like, but I'd much prefer this:


Tim Footman said...

But what about a Bacon painting of the tennis girl? She'd have a mange-ridden pope slithering out of her bumcrack.

garfer said...

A delightful image Tim.

I think I'd prefer a Lucian Freud. Saggy blemished and pock marked buttocks would be infinitely preferable.

MJ said...

He was simply bringing home the bacon.

KAZ said...

I see you more as a Tretchikoff man.
The sexy end of high irony kitsch.

garfer said...


As the post title said.


Who he? I'm more of a 'Readers Wives man meself.

MJ said...

Ah crap, I missed the obvious.

I have nothing then.

*fades away*

garfer said...

Just shows how much attention you were paying.


MJ said...

It was 2 in the morning, I was tired and slightly tipsy and my laptop was precariously balanced.

Am I forgiven?

garfer said...

Certainly not.

Get to the back of the class and stay there until the end of the lesson.

pissoff said...

Oh c'mon Garfer... giver MJ the strap. Don't let her off that easy.

garfer said...

What, an arab strap?