David Hockney: Yorkshire artist's latest exhibition is stunning tribute to David Hockney

Yorkshire artist Gail Hurst has been chosen to appear in the Society of Women Artists’ latest exhibition in London. Steve Teale reports.

Only when Hull became City of Culture in 2017 did Gail Hurst finally decide to become a full-time artist.

She had combined her love of painting and sculpture with her work in education but finally with family support she took the plunge.

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And now it has paid off she is convinced she made the right decision.

Artist Gail Hurst pictured in her studio near Hull with her sculpture of David Hockney made out of old Yorkshire Posts. Picture Jonathan GawthorpeArtist Gail Hurst pictured in her studio near Hull with her sculpture of David Hockney made out of old Yorkshire Posts. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe
Artist Gail Hurst pictured in her studio near Hull with her sculpture of David Hockney made out of old Yorkshire Posts. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

As if it reinforce the message, the Society of Women Artists (SWA) has honoured her.

Her work – a tribute to David Hockney – features among a stunning collection of works from some of the finest women artists working today from the UK and beyond on show at the prestigious Mall Galleries, from June 25 to 29.

The Hockney statue includes pieces of newsprint – notably from The Yorkshire Post. She said: “I have always done art and I always will. I did a lot of canal ware art which is the folk art associated with narrowboats.

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“But I have always admired David Hockney so my work in this exhibition is a tribute to him. I don’t know if he has seen it or is aware of it but I hope he would like it.

“I like Hockney because of the way he uses colour and shape and for the skill of his work.”

She says most of her work is related to delights in the landscape, the elements, plant life, exquisite natural forms and often for the sheer pleasure of exploring materials.

Of the London show, she said this is fabulous opportunity to see more than 450 works, from members and non-members, including: oil paintings, watercolours, drawings, etchings, lithographs, screen prints, sculpture, ceramics, portraiture, landscapes, with a rich balance of large and small pieces, abstract and figurative, traditional and quirky.

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The society holds a special event supporting its Young People’s Art Initiative. This year it will be on Tuesday June 25 6pm to 8.30pm with guest speaker Sarah Rollings, Headmistress of Heathfield School, Ascot and Cristina Meneses, Partner, Estee Lauder’s Women’s Leadership Network.

Princess Michael of Kent will attend the event.

Every year, the SWA exhibition raises money for Breast Cancer Now. This year it also has another wonderful charity evening planned for Meningitis Now.

Mrs Hurst said: “The SWA is a very historic and important society. It was founded in 1855 by courageous and talented women who were unable to exhibit in the male-dominated culture they were born into.

“Every generation of women since has taken the baton and run with it with an energy and determination that comes through in their vibrant and eclectic work today.”

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The Society of Women Artists’ 163rd Annual Open exhibition will be at the Mall Galleries, The Mall, St. James’s, London.

Visit www.society-women-artists.org.uk for further information and opening times.

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