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Last Updated: Monday, 3 September 2007, 12:14 GMT 13:14 UK
Bacon's 'rent cheque' to make 9m
Study from the Human Body, Man Turning on the Light, by Francis Bacon
Proceeds from the sale will raise money for a new college campus
A painting by renowned artist Francis Bacon, given to London's Royal College of Art in return for rent, is expected to fetch up to 9m at auction.

Study from the Human Body, Man Turning on the Light goes under the hammer at Christie's in London on 14 October.

Earlier this year, Bacon's Study from Innocent X fetched $52.6m (26.5m) at Sotheby's in New York - a record auction price for a Bacon artwork.

The art college is selling the painting to raise funds for a new campus.

Bacon had no formal artistic training and was never a student at the London college.

But following a fire at his studios, the artist took at short tenancy at the college in 1969 - and paid his rent, according to the college rector Sir Christopher Frayling "in spectacular pictorial form".

Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon died at the age of 82, following a heart attack

The painting will form the highlight of Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale this autumn.

The picture is one of a series of studies of the male nude executed by the artist in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Created between 1973 and 1974, it is hailed by critics for its vulnerability and echoes of mortality. Bacon's lover George Dyer had committed suicide two years earlier

Born in Ireland, Bacon became one of the most prominent contemporary artists of his lifetime, with major retrospectives in Paris in 1971, the Metropolitan Museum in New York in 1975 and the Tate in 1985.

He died of a heart attack in Madrid in April 1992.

Former alumni of the Royal College of Art include Tracy Emin, David Hockney and Henry Moore.

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