David Hockney: Drawing from Life

Sarah Howgate (Text by (Art/Photo Books)) David Hockney (Artist)


Celebrating more than 60 years of intimate portraiture by David Hockney

Published to accompany a major international exhibition, David Hockney: Drawing from Life features Hockney's drawings from the 1950s to the present day, and focuses on his depictions of himself and a small group of sitters close to him: his muse, Celia Birtwell; his mother, Laura Hockney; and his friends, the curator, Gregory Evans, and master printer, Maurice Payne. In his portrait drawings of these figures, Hockney tries out new stylistic experiments and expresses his admiration for his artistic predecessors, from Holbein to Picasso.

Featuring 150 beautifully reproduced works from public and private collections across the world, this publication traces the trajectory of Hockney's drawing practice by examining how he has revisited these five figures throughout his career. Highlights include a series of new portraits, colored pencil drawings created in Paris in the early 1970s, composite Polaroid portraits from the 1980s and a selection of drawings from an intense period of self-scrutiny during the 1980s when the artist created a self-portrait every day for two months.

David Hockney (born 1937) is considered one of the most celebrated British contemporary artists. Hockney studied at the Bradford School of Art and the Royal College of Art with R.B. Kitaj, Allen Jones and Derek Boshier. Graduating with a gold medal, he became a leading figure in pop art. His work encompasses drawing, painting, printmaking, photography and stage design.--Alastair Sooke "Telegraph"

Product Details

$45.00  $41.40
National Portrait Gallery
Publish Date
April 28, 2020
10.1 X 1.0 X 10.9 inches | 3.05 pounds

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About the Author

David Hockney (born July 9, 1937) is an English painter, draftsman, printmaker, stage designer, and photographer. He first emerged in the early 1960s during the height of British pop, then moved to Los Angeles in 1964, where he famously painted a series of swimming pools. Alongside the classic genres of portraiture and landscape, he always kept evolving his art, using technologies such as Polaroids, photocopiers and fax machines, digital video, or the iPhone and iPad as tools for his painting. Since his first big survey exhibition, which in 1970 traveled Europe from the Whitechapel Gallery in London, he has been one of the most widely shown and popular artists of our time.


From joyful sketches of old friends to a nude meeting with Picasso - when Hockney wields his pencil we see the undisguised truth--Jonathan Jones "Guardian"
The history of Hockney and his lifelong life-drawing itch, pursued now over seven decades.--Michael Glover "Hyperallergic"
A stunning overview of [Hockney's] drawings from the late 1950s to the present day.--Ken Scrudato "Blackbook"
The artist's dearest friends and family are the focus of an unusual and unmissable retrospective of works on paper--Jackie Wullschlรคger "Financial Times"
David Hockney Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery Shines Light on an Artist's Life--Chris Jenkins "Arts and Collections"
as intimate as it gets, and barely a swimming pool in sight.--Alastair Sooke "Telegraph"
A touching, intimate look at one of the nation's best artists.--Eddy Frankel "Time Out London"
The story of an artist in evolution.--Tabish Khan "Londonist"