Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Hockney - another biography

The latest biography on David Hockney (Part 1: 1937-1975) paints a totally contrasting picture to being gay in the 60s and 70s than in those grim war years and in the 1950s as suffered by Alan Turing - here we have the full story on David as art student in his gold jacket and becoming the media darling of the 60s art crowd, and then of course his move to California where he becomes the painter of L.A. with all those boys in pools. What impresses about Hockney is that he never stopped working, everywhere he went he was painting. I particularly like his early 70s period in Paris. I still have a framed poster from his 1974 Paris exhibition. I also liked the Hockney look of that era: the glasses, the pastel colour clothes, he was just so individual - he was his own creation, as well as doing those opera designs and so many different types of drawings and sketches; the paper pools, his dogs, all those friends etc. Jack Hazan's 1974 film A BIGGER SPLASH captures it all perfectly.

Peter getting out of Nick's pool; Contre Jour in the French Style.

Part two should be fascinating too, as Hockney returns to England and settles in Bridlington, where his parents lived, and showcasing all his later developments with photocpiers, polaroids, photo montages and now digital art on his iPad and iPhone, and his new large paintings of the landscapes in the North of England, as he becomes the grand old man of British art, as detailed in all those books on his changing art. He is still a ferocious smoker too! We had a big exhibition of his prime works a couple of years ago, and a new one will be unveiled here in January running through to April 2012.

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