David Hockney talks about Saltaire and not knowing about Bradford being awarded UK City of Culture in Guardian interview

The Guardian broke the news to artist David Hockney that his home city of Bradford had been awarded UK City of Culture 2025 during an interview, it has emerged.

Hockney, now 84, was visiting England from his home in Normandy for an exhibition of his work at the University of Cambridge when Guardian journalist Jonathan Jones was granted an audience with him.

The artist was born in Bradford in 1937 and studied at Bradford Grammar School and Bradford College of Art, but left his home city in 1959 for a place at the Royal College of Art and lived between London, Paris and California from the 1960s before settling in his French farmhouse and studio.

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Hockney told Jones that during his first year at art school in London, he visited numerous small museums to 'catch up' because of the lack of culture in Bradford and Leeds at the time.

When Jones asks about Bradford's recent triumph in being named City of Culture 2025, the painter admitted he did not know of the news - and is not particularly excited by it, adding that he has not lived in the city since the 1950s and only visits Saltaire.

Hockney enjoyed a close friendship with the late founder of Salt's Mill, Jonathan Silver, and the gallery is still home to an important collection of his work, including recent paintings of spring in Normandy.

There are also references to his 87-year-old sister Margaret Hockney, who still lives in Yorkshire and who he was planning to visit during the trip - as well as a recent commission to paint a portrait of singer Harry Styles.