Francis Bacon designed rugs could bring six figures in UK auction

He is one of Britain's best known artists, but before he turned to producing art Francis Bacon also designed furniture and rugs.

Two of the rugs he created during this short stint as an interior designer will now feature as part of a UK auction to be held September 11-12.

Francis Bacon interior design rugs
Bacon's rugs were inspired by his European travels

The rugs are part of a small number of Bacon's designs that were made at the Royal Wilton Carpet Factory in his early 20s. Little is known about the artist's career as an interior designer, as it is believed he destroyed much of this early work when he first discovered his artistic talent.

The Authentication Committee of Francis Bacon: The Catalogue Raisonne commented: "Research into Bacon's early career as an interior designer is in its early stages. Based on current available knowledge it appears that the rug and runner are consistent in style, manufacture and signature with the small output of rugs that Bacon designed and had made up by Wiltons in c1929."

Bacon's interior design work is said to be inspired by his European travels and, in particular, his time spent in Paris. It is known that he held two exhibitions of this work in 1929 and 1930, both held at his home and studio at Queensberry Mews in London.

An estimate for the two examples has not been provided by the auction house, though Bdaily Business Network reported that they are expected to make a six figure sum. Paul Fraser Collectibles believes this to be a reasonable expectation, as Bacon's interior design career undoubtedly played an instrumental role in his later artworks.

Collectors with a more modest budget will have the chance to bid on Bacon's Orestia of Aeschlylus lithograph on September 8-9, which will sell with an $8,000-12,000 estimate.

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