A new exhibition of paintings and photography by David Hockney is set to open at Annely Juda Fine Art in May. The show is an exploration of his interest in perspective and features a series of group portraits, including those of card players, and other portraits and scenes painted in his Los Angeles studio in 2014 and 2015. Hockney has stated that he is currently in the midst of his most productive period in twenty years. He puts it down to his return to Los Angeles and seeing a major exhibition by Picasso as well as the Matisse Cut Out exhibition which moved from Tate Modern to MoMa in New York.
Hockney commenting on the paintings and photographs said: “Painters have always known there is something wrong with perspective. The problem is the foreground and the vanishing point. The reason we have perspective with a vanishing point, is that it came from optics. I am sure that that’s what Brunelleschi did. He used a five inch diameter concave mirror to project the Baptistry onto his panel. This gives automatically a perspective picture, just like a camera would. This is why there is always a void between you and the photograph. I am taking this void away, to put you in the picture. I made the paintings of the card players first. That helped me work out how to photograph them. Everything in the photographs is taken very close. The heads the jackets and shirt and shoes are all photographed up close. Each photograph has a vanishing point, so instead of just one I get many vanishing points. It is this that I think gives them an almost 3D effect without the glasses. I think this opens up photography into something new. If you really think about it, I know the single photograph cannot be seen as the ultimate realist picture. Well not now. Digital photography can free us from a chemically imposed perspective that has lasted for 180 years.”
Hockney was born in Bradford in 1937. He graduated from the Bradford School of Art in 1957 and studied at the Royal College of Art from 1959–62. While there he met RB Kitaj and became instrumental in the founding of the British Pop Art movement. Hockney settled in Los Angeles in 1978. He has been the subject of countless solo exhibitions worldwide including a major touring retrospective held at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and the Tate Gallery, London in 1988.
Annely Juda Fine Art have represented David Hockney since 1996. Over many years Hockney has been known for responding to new technological possibilities and has famously used ipad drawings, poloroid photography, faxed images and photocopying in his art.
All images © David Hockney courtesy Annely Juda Gallery London
David Hockney Painting and Photography 15 May–27 June 2015 Annely Juda Fine Art London