David Hockney

Peter Adam, Author, Jackie Kay, Author
Peter Adam, Author, Jackie Kay, Author Absolute Press $9.95 (143p) ISBN 978-1-899791-55-2
Reviewed on: 09/01/1997
Release date: 09/01/1997
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The British-born, longtime Los Angeles resident, gay painter Hockney suffers from overexposure in a plethora of books about his mixed achievements in painting, drawing, stage design and photography. However, a memoir by Adam, a BBC documentary filmmaker, author of Art of the Third Reich and a friend of the artist, adds a personal tone that is different from the usual Hockney-olatry. Adam, who attracted much attention in England with his refreshingly candid autobiography about his experiences as a gay German Jew, Not Drowning but Waving, is frank in his approach to Hockney's sex life, money matters and other details. Particular attention is given to gay erotica drawn by the artist, which was suppressed in a controversial 1980's Los Angeles retrospective, but is a special interest of Adam, who also authored a study, forthcoming from Thames & Hudson, The Love of Man: Homoerotic Art from Antiquity to the Present Time. The British edition was titled David Hockney and His Friends, which was really more apt as the focus is on the importance of friends--which includes lovers, even some ultimately very unfriendly ones, and ex's who have walked out on him only to return as vague employee-assistants. Part of Outlines, a new series of brief biographies of important gay and lesbian creators, this book is one of the most substantial. (Nov.)
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