Hockney at the Orangerie

Well, I don’t seem to be having much luck with art exhibitions. I was unable to see the Vivian Maier photo expo at the Musée de Luxembourg last week, and on Monday I couldn’t get into the Musée de l’Orangerie to see the Hockney expo (long, long lines).

A Year in Normandie, David Hockney exhibition at the Musée de l’Orangerie in the Tuileries Gardens.

Revered as one of Great Britain’s most influential artists and a pioneer of the 1960s pop art movement, Hockney is an English painter, draftsman, printmaker, stage designer, and photographer.

He has owned residences and studios in Bridlington, London and Normandy, as well as two residences in California, where he has lived intermittently since 1964: one in the Hollywood Hills, and one in Malibu. In 2018, Hockney’s 1972 work Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) sold at Christie’s auction house in New York City for $90 million to an anonymous purchaser, becoming the most expensive artwork by a living artist sold at auction.

Hockney is a hedonist painter. His pictures are about enjoyment. His pursuit of life, liberty and happiness first expressed itself in unabashed portrayals of gay desire, at a time when homosexuality was a crime in Britain. But his paintings of his LA friends, such as the writer Christopher Isherwood, of swimming pools and swimmers, of men in showers, are not just records of his life; they are poetic rhapsodies of colour and light. It is through the white spume of a diver’s splash, against dark blue water under a light blue sky, that he expresses longing, love, the moment held. “California has a very clear light. You can see 100 miles sometimes. It’s very, very clear and that’s what I loved about it.” (source The Guardian, May 10, 2021, Jonathan Jones article)

His residence in Normandy from 2019 was intended for him to paint the local landscape, which he has done prolifically using both paint and iPad.

David Hockney takes over the Musée de l’Orangerie from 13 October 2021 to 14 February 2022 with an 80-metre long fresco that tells us about the tireless cycle of nature and the long-awaited arrival of spring in his adopted Normandy.

Below, Hockney as a young man and Hockney today:

4 thoughts on “Hockney at the Orangerie

  1. Thanks so much for this, Juliet in Paris. We are planning a visit to Paris soon and will definitely see this (buying tickets in advance!)

  2. Missing the exhibition must have been a disappointment. Most of your post has been cribbed directly from Wikipedia which is a disappointment too. Reputable bloggers would at least give credit for material copied from other sources as you’ve done with the quote at the end.

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