“When Bacon rushed into my life, I was fascinated by a unique giant.”

Patron and President of Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation agreed to talk about his passion for painters and the activities the Foundation has undertaken.

Please tell me your background??

After earning a degree in business administration and a master’s degree in international affairs in the UK, he began working as a family-owned corporate director in Monaco. I am also the co-owner of the Hotel Metropole in Monte Carlo with my brother and the founder of Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation Monaco, a non-profit organization dedicated to the British artist Francis Bacon.

How do you express the bond between yourself and Monaco???

Very strong. My family has been here for over 40 years and has a deep attachment to the Principality and the Prince’s family.

Why did you decide to launch Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation in Monaco???

When I was a student in London, I took an art history course, visited the Tate Gallery, and when I was in my twenties, I encountered Bacon’s triptych. Three studies for the person at the root of the crucifixion (1944), it went against the interpretation and created a need for me to explore his world.

During the course of his research, the artist first visited Monaco in the early 1940s, was a resident of Monaco from July 1946 to the early 1950s, and he regularly with his family and lovers in the Principality. I found that I continued to stay in. , And a circle of friends until the end.

Internal view of the foundation. On the wall is Francis Bacon (photographer: Carlos Freire) © Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation / MB Art Collection in his studio at 7 Reece Mews in London in 1977.

He quickly talked about his stay in Monaco, and despite the many distractions he faced, he often mentioned the work he managed to do here. It was Monaco that he began to focus on the expression of the human figure and began his first series of popes and series of heads. Therefore, laying the foundation in the Principality seemed to me an obvious choice.

His powerful image is intensely painful, disturbing, shocking, fascinating, and has a fascinating power that no one can be indifferent to.

The important support of Prince Albert II and the Monaco authorities played a major role in the creation of the project, and Sovereign launched the Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation on October 28, 2014, the anniversary of the painter’s birth.

What does a painter mean to you? What does his art awaken in you?

When Bacon rushed into my life, I was immediately fascinated by this unique, unclassifiable, self-taught, uncompromising giant. As an observer of the time, he successfully portrayed the monumental and tragic work of “concentration of reality”, fascinated and annoyed me. His powerful image is intensely painful, disturbing, shocking, fascinating, and has a fascinating power that no one can be indifferent to.

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Do you have any original works for you?

One of my favorite pieces of bacon and part of my collection Figure crouchingProbably a 1949 canvas painted in Monaco.

Francis Bacon, “Figure Crouching”, 1949 © Francis Bacon’s estate.All rights reserved / MB Art Collection

What is the purpose of your foundation?

The Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation is a non-profit organization specializing in the research and research of British painters. It was created to promote a better understanding of the artist’s work, life and creative processes, with a particular focus on the period in which he lived and worked in Monaco and France.

Every four years, research scholarships are awarded to PhD students of the Ecole du Louvre, who support research and focus on Francis Bacon, and are open to researchers and art historians. We also support artistic creation by offering scholarships to young graduate students at Villa Arson, publishing books on bacon and supporting publications on artists.

The Foundation also produces short films about painters and contributes to the exhibition by lending and funding their works. There are the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco, Tate Liverpool, the Fabre Museum in Montpellier, the Fondation Beyeler in Basel, the Fernand Leger Museum in Bio, the Pompidou Center in Paris, the Pompidou Museum in Lyon and the Royal Academy in London. Some of the museums we work with.

The Foundation is open to researchers and art historians all year round. Open to the public by appointment every Tuesday and the first Saturday of every month, guided tours are available free of charge.

What other philanthropic activities do you do?

In 2020, I founded the Louvre Museum and the Donation Fund. It is aimed at preserving and enhancing the collection of this famous Parisian institution.

Revenues from the fund were destined to help restore the works of the Louvre, which were praised by Bacon during his many visits, some of which influenced his own works. .. That same year, I became a supporter of the Ecole du Louvre Donation Fund and donated money to continue my work.

By establishing the Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation, we wanted to further contribute to Monaco’s existing cultural palette.

I was also a patronage of an ambitious architectural project called “ÉCOLEDULOUVRE 2021-2022”, which includes library, IT, documentation services, cafeteria refurbishment, and the creation of a recently launched research center.French Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot-Princess Caroline of Narquin and Hanover

This is the most important funding ever provided to educational institutions run by the Ministry of Culture. For this major project, I also provided the school with two sculptures by British artist Antony Gormley. Witness VII When Witness VIIIAnd the photographs of easels and artists owned by Francis Bacon, for the first time brought works of art to this research and research environment.

How do you see the world of Monaco’s cultural offerings and arts?

All forms of culture have always played a fundamental role in the history of the Principality. The Ballet de Monte-Carlo, Philharmonic Orchestra and Monte-Carlo Opera have been internationally renowned for over a century.

In particular, the Principality’s cultural offerings have grown significantly over the last few decades, thanks to the opening of two facilities, the Grimaldi Forum, which hosts major exhibitions that are a must-see each summer, along with other attractions. I noticed that I was there. See Monaco’s New National Museum, which hosts events and several exhibitions each year to promote Monaco’s heritage and its collections.

The Marine Museum also contributes to this movement by inviting major artists to its temporary exhibition. This development was made possible thanks to the essential support of Prince Albert II and Princess Caroline of Hanover, as well as numerous initiatives by the Department of Culture.

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The Principality of Monaco has become the center of the art market with the advent of the Art Monte Carlo show, but also thanks to the recent opening of the famous gallery and the vitality of the auction house. By establishing the Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation, we wanted to further contribute to the existing cultural landscape of Monaco.

What are your preferences and choices as a collector?

I devoted my collection to Francis Bacon’s work, Graham Sutherland, Roy De Maistre, Denis Wirth Miller, Vladimir Putinkovich, Cesar, Maggi Hambling, Louis Le Blocky. I also got the work of a painter who worked with Bacon. Or Ernest Pinon-People influenced by Bacon’s work such as Ernest and Robert Longo. “When Bacon rushed into my life, I was fascinated by a unique giant.”

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