David Hockney is an English Artist. He is most commonly known as a key contributor to the Pop Art Movement in the 1960s, but he is also recognised for his work as a painter, stage designer, photographer and printmaker.
Born in Bradford in 1937, Hockney was the fourth of five children to Laura and Kenneth Hockney. It was clear from an early age that he was extremely talented when it came to art, this is shown by the fact that he would later go on to study at Bradford College Of Art and the Royal College Of Art In London. Whilst the Pop Art Movement began in England in the 1950s, it spread to the USA in the 1960s and has become most commonly liked with this decade. Some recognisable names associated with Pop Art include American Artists such as Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. But one of the most influential British Artists affiliated with the movement was David Hockney.
The name Pop Art is defined as being an 'art based on modern popular culture and the mass media, especially as a critical or ironic comment on the traditional fine art values.' A lot of Pop Art pieces include bright colours and figurative painting, this is evident in Hockney's work. Hockney was a big fan of Cubism (an early 20th Century art movement) and so he combined elements of Cubism and Pop Art to create some of his Art Work. Below is some of Hockney's most famous pieces of work.
Paintings & Landscapes
The first three pieces in the Gallery above are probably David Hockney's most recognisable art works. The first is 'Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy'. This piece was painted between 1970 and 1971 and is located in the Tate Britain Gallery, London. The painting depicts British fashion designer Ossie Clark and his then wife Celia Birtwell in their Notting Hill flat shortly after their wedding. 'Percy' was one of the couple's cats, however the one portrayed in the painting was actually called Blanche. Hockney decided to use the name Percy as he believed it sounded much better, I personally believe he made the right decision. Hockney began by taking a photograph of the couple and then went on to make drawings before painting the piece. The work was painted on canvas in acrylic paint and isn't so much a Pop Art piece, it actually incorporates 1960s minimalist style. We can see the elements of minimalism as the room is quite simple.
The second piece in the gallery is called 'My Parents' as is exactly what it sounds to be. It's quite similar to Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy in a way as it's another painting of people that has come from photography and drawing. How it differs is, 'My Parents' was done in Oil Paint on Canvas as a supposed to Acrylic. The work was painted in 1977, a year before his father's death and was sold to the Tate Collection, much like Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy, in 1981.
The third piece in the Gallery is 'A Bigger Splash'. This piece is a Pop Art painting from 1967 measuring 95.5 in x 96.0 in. Out of the three paintings I've looked at so far, this is definitely the brightest and it is evident that it is a Pop Art piece. Hockney uses acrylic but only a limited palette in comparison to some of his other art works. He uses two different shades of Blue, two different shades of Sienna as well as Green, Yellow and White. The paintings main focus is the splash coming from the pool but we can also see a single story California home on a sunny day.
Iphone & Ipad DrawiNgs
Whilst Hockney is most notable for his physical paintings on Canvas, he has also experimented with drawing, printmaking, watercolours, photography and has recently started trying IPhone/IPad drawings. Some of my favourite work by David Hockney has to be his Photography. I love the way he is able to capture lots of different angles of the same item and combine all the photos together to make one big Photograph. David Hockney is evidently very talented, I love his use of colour in his paintings. Some of his more recent IPhone and IPad drawings incorporate that unique Pop Art style he acquired in the 1960s. I've included some of what I believe are Hockney's best pieces of Art Work above.
Art Noveau is a style of decorative art, architecture and design. It is somewhat of a predecessor to Art Deco and Pop Art and was once again mostly prominent in Western Europe and the USA. It was most popular between 1890 and 1910 and is considered a 'total art style' meaning it involves a range of fine and decorative arts. Art Noveau embraces architecture, graphic art, interior design, Jewellery, furniture, textiles and household silver. In the Galleries below you can see how the Art Noveua Artists of the time managed to incorporate the style into many different pieces. It is characterized by flowing lines and curves and linear designs. Art Noveau is evident in France, you see a lot of the style in the lettering and the swirling staircases..
The term 'Art Noveau' first appeared in a Belgian art journal in 1884 and it really took off from there. It became much more popular by 1890 when Tiffany Glass and Decorative company was established, from that point the style was advertised through posters and people began to feel familiar with the aesthetic. Gustav Klimt was one of the leading artists in the Art Noveau movement, he was an Austrian Artist that did a lot of figurative work and landscape paintings.
Art Noveau artists also illustrate romantic Fairytale like drawings, these are some of my absolute favourite pieces of Art Work. In the Gallery below there is sketch of Arthur Rackham's Chesire Cat. The drawing is from 1907 and was created for a publication of Lewis Carroll's 'Alice's Adventures In Wonderland'.
List Of Art Noveau Artists
Utagawa Hiroshige was a Japanese artist born in 1797. His art style is completely different to anything else I've looked at so far, it doesn't fit the Art Noveau or Pop Art Style. His work is some of the oldest I'm going to look at in this reflective report - it is mostly paintings but does have elements of printing in it as well. Hiroshige was most notable for doing landscape compositions and Woodblock Printing.
Hiroshige is considered a Ukiyo-e artist and considered one of the greatest and last artists of that tradition. His work would actually go on to become an influence in Anime, you can see some of the similarities between his work and Anime Animation. His landscapes are some of the most beautiful pieces of work he has created, he started doing these between 1829-1830. He likes to incorporate flowers and birds into his paintings as well.
His work varies in terms of colour, on one hand he uses a lot of bright colour but on the other some of his painting use darker colours. His work almost looks somewhat newer than it actually is - it has a cartoonish element to it and I would consider it timeless. In terms of his style, Hiroshige was actually remembered for using striking colour. As well as this he used unusual vantage points, these are places that provide a good clear view of the area, and Seasonal Allusions. Artist Vincent Van Gogh seemed greatly influenced by the work of Hiroshige, he went on to produce copies of some of his prints.
Egon Schiele was an Austrian painter born in 1890 and dying in 1918. He was a protege of artist Gustav Klimt whom I looked at briefly when researching Art Noveau. Schiele was a leading figure in the Austrian 'Expressionism' movement and is most commonly remembered for his portraits and self portraits. Throughout his short life Schiele produced a number of paintings and drawings, he used a lot of bold line and mostly dark colour. he tends to use a lot of black, a lot of his drawings and sketches are done completely in black - when he did incorporate paint, it tended to be dark green, brown, reds and many other darker colours.
Schiele was born in Tulln, Lower Austria to his Mother Marie and Father Adolf - he was the third of their children. He was always a big lover of drawing and sketching, when he was younger he used to really enjoy drawing trains, so much so that his Father felt obliged to destroy his sketchbooks. Schiele wasn't academically blessed and didn't do particularly well at school until it came to Art... One of his earliest self portraits is from 1906 when he was 16 years old. Schiele was actually considered 'strange' by other children at school which is interesting because whilst I am a fan of his work, I would probably use the same word to describe some of it. Perhaps this is due to the raw sexuality and intensity that his pieces portray. He seemed almost fascinated with the human body! Not only did he draw quite a few naked portraits of others but his self portraits mostly depict him in the nude. He was extremely good at drawing hands which are commonly refereed to as one of the hardest body parts to draw.
Schiele greatly admired the work of Gustav Klimt and so in 1907 he sought out Klimt and the two formed what started as a mentor/mentee relationship and developed later into a friendship. Klimt was a great influence on Schiele's work and also introduced him to the work of Vincent Van Gogh and Edvard Munch. Schiele died tragically of influenza at the young age of 28. This is extremely sad considering Schiele was on the verge of great commercial success. Whilst he is famous now and young artists tend to look and research his work, who knows what Egon Schiele might have gone on to produce. You can see some of his greatest art works in the Gallery below.
Euan Uglow was a British painter born in 1932 and dying in 2000. He was predominantly a painter of the human figure but he also painted still life’s and landscapes. Uglow was always a great lover of Art, he studied at Camberwell School Of Art from 1948 to 1950 under William Coldstream. Coldstream was a big influence on Uglow’s work, he actually followed him to Slade School Of Art in 1951 when Coldstream started teaching there. However Uglow has stated that painter Claude Rogers was probably more significant in his development.
Uglow wasn’t immediately successful in Art, it wasn’t until the early 60s that he sold his first painting. As you can see from the Gallery below, Uglow’s method was meticulous - it involved a great deal of measuring and correction. This obviously took a lot of time in fact Uglow once joked himself that he began painting one model when she was engaged, was still painting when she got married and did not finish painting until after she was divorced.
Uglow preferred his canvas to be square and golden rectangle or a rectangle of exact root value. Colour was fundamental to his understanding, as you can see from the Gallery below he used quite a lot of bright colour. He used blue in the background as well as a lot of yellows and greens. He also used photography in some aspects of his work which you can see from his painting ‘Skull’.
Albert Giacometti was a Swiss artist born in 1901 and dying in 1966. He was a sculptor, painter, draftsman and printmaker. Born in Borgonovo Switzerland, he was the eldest of four children of Giovanni Giacometti. Giovanni was a well known post-impressionist painter. He became interested in Art from an early age most likely due to the fact that he came from an Artistic background.
In 1922, he moved to Paris to study under the sculptor Antoine Bourdelle, it was there that Albert Giacometti experimented with Cubism and Surrealism. When he first started working on his sculptures he focused on the human head. He preferred using models he was close to, such as his sister Isabel Rawsthorne, Isabel was also an artist. In his later life his sculptures got bigger and better, he shifted his focus to the body instead of just the head.
When it comes to his drawings, they are extremely sketchy. The way in which he uses a great number of lines would indicate that he is drawing whilst looking at an object as a supposed to looking at the drawing itself. His drawings and sculptures are similar in terms of the fact that they have the appearance of sketchiness and are often distorted figures. You can see in the Gallery below the similarities between his sculptures and drawings.
Guillermo Del Toro
Guillermo del Toro is a Mexican filmmaker born in 1964. He is a director, screenwriter, producer, author, actor and former special effects makeup artist. However, he is probably most known for directing the Academy Award winning fantasy film Pan’s Labyrinth (2006). Whilst he is not considered an Artist, he actually created a Sketchbook for Pan’s Labyrinth with a number of surreal and interesting drawings. Below is a Gallery containing numerous pages from his sketchbooks.
Pan’s Labyrinth is a dark fantasy film, it was realeased in 2006 but some of the oldest parts of the sketchbook go as far back as 1993. As you can see below from del Toro’s sketches, there is a nightmareish element to his drawings. You can barely make out what the writing says but the drawings give some sort of indication as to what is going on in each part.
One of the first drawings in the Gallery is called the ‘nerve ghost’, you can sort of see that idea in the ghostly appearance of his face and then the red body gives that impression of nerves. The nerve ghost was an original idea for ‘The Pale Man’, in fact a lot of these ideas were original ideas and ones that didn’t necessarily make it to the film. The Pale Man in the film is still extremely disturbing and looks extremely similar to one of the bottom photos in the Gallery, the one with the long face and wide eyes. Del Toro is obviously extremely talented when it comes to drawing and has pages and pages of his artwork in sketchbooks.