Friday, 23 March 2012

Dr Rina Arya – Francis Bacon, Painting in a Godless World

Many readers of this blog will already know that  Dr. Rina Arya, Reader in Visual Communication has been working on a new book about leading twentieth century artist, Francis Bacon.

Francis Bacon, Painting in a Godless World, is soon to be published by Lund Humphries and marks a new approach to appreciating the work of this renowned artist.

Throughout his career, Francis Bacon (1909-1992) made many anti-religious and, more specifically, anti-Christian statements. Bacon was a militant atheist but his atheism was not a simple dismissal of religion and religious belief. He exploited the symbols of Christianity, especially the Crucifixion and the Pope, in order to show its untenability in the modern age. 

Setting out to account for Bacon's recurrent and sustained use of religious symbols, Rina Arya explains how the artist redeployed religious iconography to convey an experience of the human condition, specifically animalism and mortality. By placing the work within the context of post-war philosophical pre-occupations with the death of God, the author provides a robust framework in which to view and interpret Bacon's complex images. 

“Dr Arya has identified an important and new field of research for Bacon study, and that there are no books in direct competition with it.” Christopher Daly, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Manchester

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