Rubbish of Francis Bacon Sold at Auction

The Francis Bacon rubbish that I mentioned earlier has sold at auction for almost 1 million pounds. The studio waste from the artist was kept for nearly 30 years by an electrician (Mac Robertson) that did some work for Bacon.

francis bacon auction

The trash quickly turned to treasure when the items made £965,490 at auction. The lots at auction included things like slashed paintings with no faces, a canvas with writing and paint spatter by Bacon, letters, journals, photos, and unused checks (cheques).

It’s trash, but it’s Bacon’s trash – and it’s sold for almost £1m
According to Mr Ewbank: “This stuff is a little bit of history. If it weren’t here, it would be gone for ever. We have a little bit of extra insight into him.” Does he have qualms about selling paintings that were rejected, indeed deliberately mutilated, by the artist? “The best judges of art are not the artists themselves,” he said. “The fact that these paintings were discarded does not mean that they are not of value. And he did say he regretted destroying so much of his work.” Guardian

About Dion

Australian artist and observer of things.. all kinds of things. I like a wide variety of art, from the weird and wonderful to the bold and beautiful.. and everything in between.


  1. First word that comes to mind. Unbelievable. Next word. Amazing. Good on him!

  2. Hey Matt, remember to put the http:// in front of your website address or it will link to this address here


  3. And yeah, they made some impressive prices. Look at some of the estimated prices, compared to the prices they made.. (from the Guradian article)

    “A study for a portrait, possibly of fellow painter Lucian Freud, fetched £400,000; its estimate was £12,000 to £18,000. A study of a dog made £260,000, on an estimate of £2,000 to £3,000. Other oil-on-canvas studies for portraits fetched between £30,000 and £46,000.”

  4. Thanks Dion! I’ll remember that.

  5. gosh, I wish my rubbish had value other than going to the tip lol! Phew that is amazing.

  6. Bacon was so volatile, that on at least one occasion he destroyed a series of paintings after they had been exhibited and purchased. These unfinished and slashed paintings are evidence of his passion and intensity and the love hate cycle that so many of us have with our work. It makes sense that these would be so sought after and highly valued.

  7. Thanks for posting this…


  1. [...] There’s also this shorter video where you can see Francis Bacon in his VERY messy studio. (Bits of that Bacon mess was recently sold at auction) [...]

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