Francis Bacon in Your Blood
In June of 1963, when Michael Peppiatt first met Francis Bacon, the former was a college boy at Cambridge, the latter already a famous painter, more than thirty years his senior. And yet, Peppiatt was welcomed into the volatile artist's world; Bacon, considered by many to be "mad, bad, and dangerous to know," proved himself a devoted friend and father figure, even amidst the drinking and gambling. Though Peppiatt would later write perhaps the definitive biography of Bacon, his sharply drawn memoir has a different vigor, revealing the artist at his most intimate and indiscreet, and his London and Paris milieus in all their seediness and splendor. Bacon is felt with immediacy, as Peppiatt draws from contemporary diaries and records of their time together, giving us the story of a friendship, and a new perspective on an artist of enduring fascination.
Deeply intimate memoir-biography of the most important artist of the twentieth century
This fine portrait of the artist is both gossipy and poignant ... [and] one of the best art books I have read, by turns atmospheric and waspishly gossipy but also profound and poignant. -- Michael Prodger The Times A vivid new memoir by the artist's protege is set to be a classic ... highly entertaining ... the narrative comes hurtling off the page with a palpable sense of release and apparently guileless, even artless, candour.The cavalcade of bohemian celebrities goes on and on ... captivating...a classic, not only of art writing, but of personal memoir Sunday Telegraph There is a certain grisly satisfaction in watching an artist behave as one expects an artist to. Francis Bacon ... always delivered and just how richly is recorded by Peppiatt ... A wonderfully vivid account -- Art Book of the Year Sunday Times The best art memoir published in years Spectator An intoxicating tour of the painter's louchest, and most productive, years -- Susie Rushton Vogue Peppiatt offers a window into the experiences and emotional intelligence of this great artist New Statesman A remarkable book ... it captures what it was like to be in the presence of this brilliant, camp, reckless, waspish, drunken, generous, shameless character. Michael Peppiatt brings him back to life and somehow carries off the near-impossible trick of echoing the repetitive nature of his drunken talk ... while somehow preserving his electricity and effervescence -- Craig Brown Mail on Sunday An intimate memoir of two intense and interlaced lives ... Full of gossip, binges, nausea, bruises, stained sheets, punchlines and death wishes -- Richard Davenport-Hines Times Literary Supplement This fine memoir is more insightful than gossipy, and as a subject Bacon is just about unbeatable New York Times Fascinating and engaging -- Lynn Barber Sunday Times Entertaining, calculated and acerbic, Michael Peppiatt really does seem to have a bit of Bacon in his blood Spectator Every page is fresh, immediate, and flashing with glimpses into Bacon's complicated psyche -- Donna Seaman Booklist An affecting personal narrative about his friendship with the great painter Publisher's Weekly Francis Bacon's views on art, death and his bohemian circle make revealing reading in this enjoyable memoir Independent An enthralling, delightful story of two very different men Kirkus Part diary, part art history, part love letter, his memoir captures what it was like to know this brilliant, camp genius ... an excellent glimpse into a vanished London bohemia -- Rebecca Wallersteiner The Lady
Michael Peppiatt studied at the University of Cambridge, where he began his career as an art writer by writing exhibition reviews for the Observer. In an international career as a writer and curator, he has curated numerous exhibitions of Francis Bacon's and other artists' work and been published in Realites magazine, Le Monde, the New York Times, the Financial Times, Art News and Art International, which he bought and relaunched in 1985. He is also the author of the definitive Bacon biography, the 1997 Francis Bacon: Anatomy of an Enigma. In 2005 he was awarded a PhD by the University of Cambridge for his published work in the field of twentieth-century art. He is a member of the Society of Authors and the Royal Society of Literature, and in 2010 he joined the international board of the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome.