Reece Mews

After his peremptory departure from his 7 Cromwell Place studio in 1951, prompted, he says, by the death of Jessie Lightfoot, Bacon is without a permanent base for ten years and works in a number of different studios until he settles in 7 Reece Mews in the autumn of 1961. It becomes his London studio and main living quarters for the rest of his life. The studio is a very private and secret place accessible only to a very few close friends. It becomes over time the repository of thousands of items that are central to his art. About the singular atmosphere of the studio, he stated “[…] I am very influenced by places – by the atmosphere of a room…I just knew from the very moment that I came here that I would be able to work here.”

When invited to visit Reece Mews, Bacon tells his companion and model John Edwards: “People think that I live grandly you know, but in fact I live in a dump.”

Francis Bacon in his Reece Mews studio (1977)
Photo and © Carlos Freire
MB Art Collection
Francis Bacon in his Reece Mews studio (1979)
Photo and © Edward Quinn
MB Art Collection
Francis Bacon in his kitchen at 7 Reece Mews (1977)
Photo and © Carlos Freire
MB Art Collection

From Bacon’s Arena documentary (2005)
© The Estate of Francis Bacon

7 Reece Mews.
Photo: Perry Ogden
George Dyer, 7 Reece Mews, (c. 1964)
Photo: John Deakin