Exhibition to showcase David Hockney’s ‘love for life’

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Undated handout issued by the Charleston Trust of "Christopher Isherwood's House, Santa Monica" by David Hockney, one of the drawings on display at the Wolfson Gallery at Charleston in East Sussex as part of an exhibition of examples of Hockney's early works.

London (PA Media/dpa) – A collection of rarely seen drawings by David Hockney which “encapsulate his love for life” is to go on display.

The Wolfson Gallery at Charleston – the home of painter Vanessa Bell in the British village of Firle – is holding the exhibition of examples of Hockney’s early works named “Love Life.”

The display is named after the 86-year-old artist’s act of painting the words “Love Life” on the wall at a retrospective exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Paris in 2017.

He said at the time: “I love my work. And I think the work has love, actually, I love life. I write it at the end of letters – ‘Love life, David Hockney’.”

A Charleston spokeswoman said: “The exhibition showcases a remarkable series of drawings that encapsulate David Hockney’s love for life and his profound connection with the world around him.

“During the formative stages of his career, Hockney’s artistic brilliance manifested through his ability to capture the essence of his subjects with remarkable economy, using pencil, coloured crayon, and pen and ink.

“Visitors to the exhibition will be enthralled by Hockney’s depictions of everyday objects, still lifes and architectural works.

“From a box of matches on a table to bunches of spring onions and leeks, Hockney’s works exemplify his ability to find beauty in the more intimate and seemingly ordinary aspects of life.

“Whether capturing the character of his subjects, or rendering furniture and empty spaces with sensitivity and wit, Hockney’s drawings capture a depth of emotion that cannot be easily replicated in grand painted portraits.”

Curator Chris Stephens said: “I am so excited to present this wonderful show of master drawings, some well known and some rarely seen.

“I have long believed David Hockney to be one of the greatest draughtsmen of all time and I consider his drawings of the later 60s and 70s to be among the greatest works by him and, for that matter, by anyone else.”

Undated handout issued by The Charleston Trust of “Ossie Wearing a Fairisle Sweater” by David Hockney, one of the drawings on display at the Wolfson Gallery at Charleston in East Sussex as part of an exhibition of examples of Hockney’s early works.

Nathaniel Hepburn, director and chief executive at Charleston, said: “Made over sixty years ago, Hockney’s drawings of intimate moments still resonate with a freshness and joy.

“It’s wonderful to see these works at Charleston – a place where art and experimental thinking have always been placed at the centre of everyday life.

“Hockney’s work exemplifies these ideals, finding beauty in the ordinary moments and creating a connection to audiences and the queer experience across the generations.”

The exhibition runs from September 23 to March 10.