David Hockney (1937 – )
David Hockney was born in Bradford. He studied at the local art college and at the Royal College of Art in London, where he was awarded the Gold Medal. His career was launched on the crest of the Pop Art wave and his work and personality attracted a degree of attention from the outset which has never significantly diminished. In 1963 a visit to Egypt laid the foundations of a recurrent interest in Egyptian art. During the next decade Hockney travelled extensively and his work reflected his appetite for new environments and his capacity for exploring what he discovered. He lived in Paris in the early 1970s but has made California his home since then. Hockney’s work has moved through a wide range of styles and he has throughout his career been fascinated by techniques and materials. He has explored the potential of acrylic, oil, crayon, pastel, pen, photography, stage design, moulded paper pulp, computer imaging and every kind of graphic medium. He has however always held a brief for the ‘subject’ in his work, contrary to the fashion for ‘abstraction’ and ‘expressionism’ with which he grew up. Prints have been a major preoccupation through most his working life and he has won a number of international graphic prizes. In the 1980s Hockney built up a new reputation for himself in the field of stage design.
David Hockney, David Hockney by David Hockney, Thames & Hudson, London 1976
David Hockney, That’s the way I see it, Thames & Hudson, London 1993
Modern synthetic paint that combines some of the properties of oils and watercolour. Most are water-based, although some are oil compatible, using turpentine as a thinner. When it became available to artists in America around 1936 it was the first new painting medium in centuries and has become a serious rival to oil paint because of its versatility. Acrylic paints can be used on nearly any surface. The water-based nature of acrylic paint allows for easy application and rapid drying time: acrylic paint dries in a matter of minutes, as opposed to the many months required for oil-based paints. Once the paint has been applied to a surface, the water evaporates, leaving behind the synthetic resin (and pigment), which is no longer water-soluble. Visually, acrylic-based paints can appear to be very similar to oil-based paints, but they cannot rival the rich, translucent nature of oils.
The arrangement of elements or details in an artefact or a work of art.
Refers to either the material used to create a work of art, craft or design, i.e. oil, bronze, earthenware, silk; or the technique employed i.e. collage, etching, carving. In painting the medium refers to the binder for the pigment, e.g. oil, egg, acrylic dispersion. The plural form is media.
A medium in which ground pigments are mixed to produce a paste or liquid that can be applied to a surface by a brush or other tool; the most common oil used by artists is linseed, this can be thinned with turpentine spirit to produce a thinner and more fluid paint. The oil dries with a hard film, and the brightness of the colour is protected. Oil paints are usually opaque and traditionally used on canvas.
A drawing medium of dried paste made of ground pigments and a water-based binder that is manufactured in crayon form. The term also refers to a picture or sketch drawn with this type of crayon.