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Muriel Belcher

1908 - 1979

Bacon studio material, John Deakin, Muriel Belcher, ca. 1950s (detail) Collection Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane Photo © John Deakin Archive, Source Clipping © The Estate of Francis Bacon

Muriel Belcher owned the Colony Room, a famous drinking club in Dean Street, Soho, which Bacon frequented. The club opened in 1948 and, realising that Bacon could help build up business, she gave him £10 a week and free drinks in return for bringing in new customers. This arrangement lasted for many years until it was no longer necessary. Known for her acerbic wit, some aspiring new members were quickly dispatched with a scathing comment. Belcher was the subject of several Bacon portraits. 

Images
Photograph of Muriel Belcher, by John Deakin

Bacon studio material, John Deakin, Muriel Belcher, ca. 1950s Photo Collection Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane © John Deakin Archive, Source Clipping © The Estate of Francis Bacon