In Review: David Hockney, A Bigger Book
Brimming with a body of work that is a fusion of calm and hyperactivity, David Hockney is renowned for delighting in challenging the status quo, introducing a fresh way of seeing through the distortion of proportion, perspective, and colour. His work shows that traditions are meant to be reimagined, and in doing so, it shifts beyond the scope of art itself, and into political and social realms too.
Added to this intrigue and desire to break new ground is Hockney’s drive to expand his works to truly seismic scales, as shown in his iconic 1967 piece ‘A Bigger Splash’, in addition to ‘A Bigger Grand Canyon’, created in 1998, his exhibition ‘A Bigger Picture’ at the Royal Academy in 2012, and now his publication, ‘A Bigger Book’, published in 2017.
Bearing the weighty dimensions of more than 2x2ft, 'A Bigger Book’s' apt, comical title takes stock of more than 60 years of work, from his teenage years at art school, to his more recent extensive series of portraits, iPad drawings, and landscapes. As each page unfurls with a burst of cobalt blues, flamingo pinks, jungle greens, and warm brick reds, our eyes and imaginations become enraptured by the size and scope of David Hockney’s revolutionary way of portraying the world.
"Nearly large enough to dive into..."
Within this sumptuous portfolio, we see his saturated palette depicting the mood of Southern California through unrivalled, almost cinematic insights of its mood and culture, through to Hockney's combining of the Cubism style with the rich colours of the Pop Art movement. Alongside this, of course, are his countless exquisite depictions of the sparkle of a turquoise pool, tirelessly studying the dynamic nature of water; its dancing rhythms a marriage of its transparency and depth.
Channelling his avant-garde approach once again, ‘A Bigger Book’ achieves a majestically weighty (pardon the pun) retrospective of the artist’s life’s work, printed onto immaculately high-quality paper for as immersive and intimate an experience as possible.
"If the water surface is almost still and there is a strong sun, then dancing lines with the colours of the spectrum appear everywhere.”