The other side of David Hockney – A life in pictures

LONDON - MAY 25:  Artist David Hockney poses infront of his work "Bigger Trees Near Warter" at the Royal Academy of Art on May 25, 2007 in London.  (Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images)LONDON - MAY 25:  Artist David Hockney poses infront of his work "Bigger Trees Near Warter" at the Royal Academy of Art on May 25, 2007 in London.  (Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images)
LONDON - MAY 25: Artist David Hockney poses infront of his work "Bigger Trees Near Warter" at the Royal Academy of Art on May 25, 2007 in London. (Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images) | 2007 Getty Images
No one but David Hockney would have chosen a view from his bedroom window in Bridlington, or Polaroids of his mother on a day trip to Bolton Abbey, to represent part of a lifelong body of work. But as these pictures from the archive amply demonstrate, Hockney never was a conformist.

It was a trait never more apparent than in 1989, when his choice of medium for a stylized painting of his home city was the front cover of the Bradford telephone directory.

Hockney’s retrospective exhibition opened at the Tate Britain two years ago, but these shots, taken across half a century, show another side to the world’s best-selling artist.

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He had left Bradford in 1959 to attend the Royal College of Art in London, but it was in Los Angeles where he established himself in the mid-1960s as a leading light in the new pop art movement.

David Hockney poses in front of The Queen's Window, a new stained glass window designed by Hockney and created by Barley Studio York, at Westminster Abbey in central London on September 26, 2018. (Photo by Victoria Jones / POOL / AFP via Getty Images)David Hockney poses in front of The Queen's Window, a new stained glass window designed by Hockney and created by Barley Studio York, at Westminster Abbey in central London on September 26, 2018. (Photo by Victoria Jones / POOL / AFP via Getty Images)
David Hockney poses in front of The Queen's Window, a new stained glass window designed by Hockney and created by Barley Studio York, at Westminster Abbey in central London on September 26, 2018. (Photo by Victoria Jones / POOL / AFP via Getty Images)

It was also in California that he produced his famous swimming pool paintings and began working in photography, creating collages which he called joiners. His innovation earned him the title of most influential British artist of the 20th century, in a poll conducted nine years ago.

Although he left Bradford behind, Yorkshire has remained a recurring theme for his art. He bought his former home in Bridlington in order to explore the surrounding Wolds, which he then immortalised in a series of works – one of which sold for £9.4m at auction two years ago.

He captured the Wolds again in perhaps his most visible recent work – the 20ft Queen’s Window in the North Transept of Westminster Abbey, created on an iPad and commissioned to mark the longest reign of a British monarch.

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Some said it sat uneasily with the great works of religion, but Hockney, who is now 82, pointed to the influence of Matisse and Chagall on his abstract hawthorn blossom motif.

NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 30:  Artist David Hockney stands by 'A bigger splash 1967' one of his works on display at the new Nottingham Contemporary art space which is holding a major retrospective of his work on November 30, 2009 in Nottingham, England. The recently opened 19 GBP million building, by architects Caruso St John, is showing over 60 works by David Hockney.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 30:  Artist David Hockney stands by 'A bigger splash 1967' one of his works on display at the new Nottingham Contemporary art space which is holding a major retrospective of his work on November 30, 2009 in Nottingham, England. The recently opened 19 GBP million building, by architects Caruso St John, is showing over 60 works by David Hockney.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 30: Artist David Hockney stands by 'A bigger splash 1967' one of his works on display at the new Nottingham Contemporary art space which is holding a major retrospective of his work on November 30, 2009 in Nottingham, England. The recently opened 19 GBP million building, by architects Caruso St John, is showing over 60 works by David Hockney. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images) | 2009 Getty Images

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David Hockney stands by his oil painting 'Bigger Trees Near Warter' on April 7, 2008 in London, England. The painting has been donated to the Tate Britain by the artist.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)David Hockney stands by his oil painting 'Bigger Trees Near Warter' on April 7, 2008 in London, England. The painting has been donated to the Tate Britain by the artist.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
David Hockney stands by his oil painting 'Bigger Trees Near Warter' on April 7, 2008 in London, England. The painting has been donated to the Tate Britain by the artist. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images) | 2008 Getty Images

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