Bacon portrait of lover up for sale

Undated handout photo issued by Christie's of Portrait of George Dyer Talking by Francis Bacon, which the auction house will be offering for sale at their Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction next month and is expected to fetch in the region of ?30m.  PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday January 15, 2014. The almost two-metre tall canvas features Dyer, Bacon's tragic muse and lover, who died of an overdose in Paris two days before the painting was displayed at Bacon's first major retrospective at the Grand Palais in 1971. See PA story SALE Bacon. Photo credit should read: Christie's/PA WireNOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%An artwork depicting the tragic muse and lover of record-breaking artist Francis Bacon is estimated to fetch around £30 million next month - the first time such a work has come up for auction in a decade.

The almost two-metre tall canvas features George Dyer, who died of an overdose in Paris two days before the painting was displayed at Bacon's first major retrospective at the Grand Palais in 1971.
It will be sold at Christie's in London and could set a record price for a single canvas by the artist. The work, Portrait of George Dyer Talking, was last sold at Christie's New York in 2000 when it sold for £4 million - a record for Bacon at the time.

His prices have soared since then and in November a new world record was set for a Bacon artwork at auction when a triptych depicting Lucian Freud sold for £89 million.

The artist met his lover in 1963 and he became the subject of many of his most celebrated works, including the portrait to be sold on February 13 which he created in 1966.

It is described by Christie's as the most significant large-scale portrait of Dyer to be offered at auction in more than a decade.

Francis Outred, the head of post-war and contemporary art for Christie's Europe, said: "It is exciting to be able to follow this success by offering this tour-de-force portrait of George Dyer which presents a powerful portrait of arguably one of Bacon's greatest loves, painted in 1966, and one of the last full-size portraits of him to remain in private hands.

"In addition it was shown at Bacon's retrospective at the Grand Palais in Paris, adding emotional poignancy and importance."

The painting - which has been seen in the UK only once, at Marlborough Fine Art in 1967 - will be exhibited in London before the sale.

Many of Bacon's depictions of Dyer are part of museum and gallery collections.

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Bacon portrait of lover up for sale
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