As the title indicates this painting by Francis Bacon incorporates figures from photographs by Eadweard Muybridge. The paralyzed child and the woman pouring water are both based on images by the photographer who was an important source for Bacon. Similar to other works by the artist, the painting shows a sparse, indistinct space. The background is an abstracted racetrack with the child and woman balanced on a ring. The distorted figures do not relate to one another; the woman even occupies a separately delineated area. Large blocks of colour break up and flatten the space. Moreover, the child and woman are restricted to their own colour field. All of these qualities indicate that the artwork is about isolation. The racetrack could also be a reference to Bacon's own life; he was not a foreigner at the tracks and was known to gamble. Bacon saw a relationship between gambling and painting, in that the element of chance is inherent to both. He specifically described painting as the negotiation between the intent of the artist and accidents on canvas.
© Estate of Francis Bacon, c/o Pictoright Amsterdam/Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam




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oil on canvas

Object number

A 37611