Like many British artists of the post–World War II era, David
Hockney (1937- ) became enamored of southern California. He was fascinated
by its culture and by its brilliant light but above all, perhaps, by the sense
of space he felt. Indeed, as he had once noted, space is the most important
thing we feel and see. Hockney moved to California permanently in the 1960s.
Sometimes called a "second-generation British Pop artist," it is a designation
he eschews, although he did have a brief flirtation with the early Pop movement
during his student days at the Royal College of Art in London. Far from being
confined to Pop, or even to painting, however, Hockney is in fact one of the
most versatile British-born artists of the 20th century. With a natural talent
for draftsmanship, he has had major successes in printmaking, photography,
and stage design. He has published a series of 12 etchings based on Hogarth's A Rake's Progress, updated to the 20th century and autobiographical.
He also illustrated a volume of poetry by C. P. Cavafy and fairy tales from
the Brothers Grimm. Among his stage designs are settings for the Metropolitan
Opera, the Los Angeles Music Center Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, and
the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Always innovative, Hockney was an early
user of the Polaroid camera to produce art images; he has most recently been
experimenting with such media as photocopiers, computers, and the fax machine.
Southgate MT. American Collectors (Fred and Marcia Weisman). JAMA. 1999;282(2):110. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-282-2-jcs90023
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