Francis Bacon. Triptych. 1991

Francis Bacon



Oil on linen, three panels
Each panel 6' 6" x 58 1/8" (198.1 x 147.6 cm)
William A. M. Burden Fund and Nelson A. Rockefeller Bequest Fund (both by exchange)
Object number
© 2017 Estate of Francis Bacon / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / DACS, London
Painting and Sculpture
This work is not on view.
Francis Bacon has 7 works  online.
There are 2,372 paintings online.

In Bacon's final triptych, made at the end of his career, a composite figure steps in and out of stagelike spaces. Seemingly nailed to the canvas are closely cropped headshots of Bacon's face, at right, and, at left, that of a Brazilian racecar driver, placed above muscular lower bodies. The triptych form is rooted in Christian religious painting; the center panel is traditionally reserved for the object of devotion. Here, an abject mass of flesh spills forth from the black niche. Bacon said his triptychs were "the thing I like doing most, and I think this may be related to the thought I've sometimes had of making a film. I like the juxtaposition of the images separated on three different canvases."

Gallery label from What is Painting? Contemporary Art from the Collection, July 7–September 17, 2007

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA's collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

If you would like to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA, please contact Scala Archives (all geographic locations) at

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or, please email If you would like to publish text from MoMA's archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to