Today we wish a happy 75th birthday to artist David Hockney!
Considered by many to be the most influential British artist of the 20th century, Hockney is a painter, printmaker, photographer, and stage designer.
Born July 9, 1937 in Bradford, England, Hockney studied early as a draughtsman and excelled. While working in England, he focused largely on text and used a graffiti, textural style involving personal subject-matter. He was part of the British Pop Art movement and further developed that sensibility after moving to Los Angeles in late 1963. After his move, he changed from oil to acrylic paint and focused on the flat smooth surfaces of paint and vivid colors for which he is most well-known.
Not one to work with only one medium and style, he also created a large body of prints. Working mostly in etchings and lithographs, his prints were often inspired by literature such as Illustrations for Six Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm (1969.) He also worked in set design beginning in 1975, credits including the Metropolitan Opera, New York production of Ravel’s L’Enfant et les sortileges in 1980 and Puccini’s Turandot at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in 1992. In the early 1980s, he began to make his photocollages, or “joiners,” from Polaroids and then 35mm film, exploring the concepts of Cubism through photography.
Intrigued by innovations in technology, Hockney has consistently played with technology and its involvement with art. After the introduction of the Brushes app for the iPhone in 2008, Hockney began to use it to create paintings. In 2011 the Royal Museum of Ontario exhibited 100 of these paintings in David Hockney fresh flowers using iPhones and iPads for the display.
The exhibition, David Hockney: A Bigger Picture, chronicling Hockney’s landscapes for the past 50 years closed in April at the Royal Academy.
This is only a brief overview of the amazing span of work created by David Hockney, and we encourage you to explore more with these links and join us in wishing this exciting and influential artist a very happy birthday!
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