“We do not look at the world from a distance; we are in it, and that’s how we feel.” – David Hockney
STPI Gallery continues its 15th anniversary celebrations with David Hockney. The exhibition of 36 carefully selected works coming mostly from the Singapore National Collection presents how Britain’s most celebrated living artist continues to push the boundaries of print techniques, investigating the one intrigue which defines his entire prolific career: perspectives.
A rebel among his contemporaries, Hockney (b.1937) - largely known for his portraits and vast landscapes – is also recognised for his refusal to be pigeonholed in a particular medium or artistic style. Over the span of six decades, he constantly experimented with numerous materials and methods available, embracing an open-minded approach to art and technology (including sketching with iPads) that led to his acclaim and relevance today.
The works presented here look into the technical challenges within the process of depiction to address two fundamental questions: “How do we see? How do we depict?” They go against the popular vanishing point perspective, which, to Hockney, limits the audience by keeping them outside of the painting. The artist believes that the human eye is more fluid and dynamic than a single point of view. Through employing multiple perspectives, which reflect the moving focus of the human eye, Hockney masterfully absorbs the viewer into the work, making them a part of the world instead of a mere onlooker.
This is shown in his innovative still-life lithographs such as ‘Walking Past Two Chairs’ (1986), where he lends from Cubism to capture time and space, as well as the more recent photographic drawing ‘4 Blue Stools’ (2014), a digital collage of photographs that break away from photography’s single point perspective.
Hockney’s works have been shown internationally in numerous museums, with major retrospectives at Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2018, 1988); The Centre Pompidou, Paris (2017); Tate Britain, London (2017); National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2016); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2006, 1988); Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2006); and Tate Modern, London (1988) just to name a few.
The Annual Special Exhibitions at STPI Gallery gives audiences in South-East Asia and Singapore the rare opportunity to encounter a remarkable scope of works on paper created by the most significant artists of modern and contemporary art history. Talks and programmes are designed to provide insight into the various themes and practices of the artists represented.