“The Studio”

Hugh Lane Gallery

Between 1998 and 2001 the Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin undertook one of the most mind-boggling art-historical enterprises of the last decade: After acquiring the studio of British painter Francis Bacon, until then housed on the top floor of a small coach house in South Kensington, the museum reinstalled it entirely in a purpose-built addition to its own building. Via the former door and window openings, visitors to the Hugh Lane can now peek into Bacon’s studio with the original door, walls, floors, ceiling, and shelves, replete with easel, slashed canvases, vintage champagne crates, books and magazines, dirty brushes, and paint splatters. Aware of the fetishistic and monumentalizing aspects of this endeavor, the Hugh Lane recently organized a show that questioned and reconsidered the significance of the artist’s studio within postwar and contemporary art. Curators Jens Hoffmann and Christina

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