Text and images by Patrick M Higgins
October brings an exciting exhibition of David Hockney’s early work to the Walker Art Gallery, featuring paintings from his time at the Royal College of Art through to his seminal work in sixties Los Angeles.
To whet the appetite, an early study of one of Hockney’s best known works, Portrait of an Artist (Pool with two figures), has arrived in town ahead of the event, kindly loaned by its owner, John Edwards and destined to be shown alongside the final work later in the year.
A crayon drawing made at a time when Hockney’s life was in turmoil as his relationship with lover Peter Schlesinger failed, we can gain an insight into the artist who was by his own admission, in creative overdrive.
“It was a way of coping with life…..I was incredibly lonely”
Hockney’s fascination with water and the quality of light, in the poolside world he experienced in California, coupled with his sense of release from the imposed inhibitions of late fifties England, directly led to his emergence as the most influential of British artists alive today.
The exhibition opens 11 Oct 2013 – 16 Mar 2014 with free admission and no booking required.
This exhibition is part of the ‘Arts Council Collection Partnerships sponsored by Christie’s’ programme and Homotopia Festival 2013.
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