A painter, a graphic artist, a photographer, a stage designer, a living classic of British art David Hockney spent almost 60 of his eighty years building his happy world with a brush and canvas. July 9, the legendary contemporary turned 83 years old.
David Hockney is one of the brightest representatives of pop art, a national treasure of Great Britain, and one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. His works are in the collections of Tate Modern, the Metropolitan Museum, and the Pompidou Center.
Hockney is the son of an accountant from Bradford. In his spare time, Hockney`s dad attended evening classes at a local art school and, sympathizing with the Communists, dressed in the spirit of Cuban leader Fidel Castro. David imitated his father. He bought clothes in the same second-hand shop and looked like a Russian peasant. So, he received the nickname Boris.
Royal College of Art scandal
Hockney refused to write a thesis, saying that the artist can only be evaluated by his work. The administration threatened that it would not give him a paper on completion. The student in protest drew a sketch called The Diploma. Given the growing popularity of Hockney at that time, after the scandal, the artist still received a diploma.
In the 1960s, Hockney worked as an illustrator. He read all 350 tales of the Brothers Grimm. 39 etchings on copper plates were made for six of them: Rapunzel, Foundling Bird, Old Rinkrank, Little Sea Hare, About Who Fearing to Learn, and Rumplestiltskin. The artist used an old and sophisticated technique of aquatint in order to achieve a deep black color.
California and masculine beauty
Hockney lived in California for 30 years, first arriving here in 1964. In Los Angeles, Hockney began painting in a naturalistic manner. The paintings depicted pools with clear blue water, tropical vegetation, and, of course, male figures. Peter Schlesinger was muse and lover of the artist. They met in 1966.
Eight times at the Picasso exhibition
In the 80s, David Hockney did the photo collages called joiners. The artist cut many polaroid images of the same object into pieces and recreated the original image in the form of a collage. Hockney’s works, made in the technique of photomontage, are compared with cubism, given the interest of the artist in this area. In 1960, Hockney, according to his own recollections, visited Picasso’s exhibition at the Tate Gallery eight times.