A Portrait of David Hockney

Peter Webb, Author Dutton Books $35 (0p) ISBN 978-0-525-24826-2
From his sudden rise as golden boy who rejuvenated British postwar art, Hockney catapulted to southern California in 1964. There his ironic, flattened images of sunbathers and swimming pools made deadpan commentaries on American lifestyles and values. Overall, Hockney's pictures can be read as diary jottings or mementos, and in this richly illustrated, workmanlike biography, British author Webb ( The Erotic Arts ) traces the interrelations between the artist's output and his personal life, his homosexuality and his wanderlust. The book looks at all phases of Hockney's output--portraits, photo-collages, male nudes, stage designs, engravings inspired by Wallace Stevens's poems and more recent experiments with computer art and photography. Although Webb reserves judgment on whether Hockney is a great artist, his admiration for his subject shines through. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/01/1989
Release date: 11/01/1989
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