David Hockney, Green Valley, 2008. Courtesy of Lyndsey Ingram.

David Hockney: Landscapes

In the 1990s, David Hockney began visiting the Yorkshire countryside to care for his elderly mother, and found himself inspired by the landscape around his childhood town. Far from his studio in Los Angeles, Hockney took the opportunity to develop a new working method, stepping outside to paint the bucolic English landscapes en plein air (out in the open). “As we say in Hollywood, I’m on location,” he once joked. These works, created both en plein air and with the help of digital photographs, depict a vibrant and reimagined English landscape, featuring surrealist shapes, expressionistic brushstrokes, and vivid colors. Inspired by his photographic collages from the ’80s, Hockney often composed his landscape paintings over multiple canvases meant to be enjoyed together as a single image. His largest work, Bigger Trees Near Warter Or/Ou Peinture en Plein Air pour l’age Post-Photographique (2007), is made up of 50 painted canvases, measuring 600 square feet. Though his landscapes are primarily painted, Hockney also renders the outdoors—from Yorkshire to Yosemite National Park—in his photographic collages and later iPad drawings.

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