In pictures: Hockney returns to Academy with new show

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BRADFORD-born David Hockney has returned to the Royal Academy of Arts to open a new exhibition of portraits.

Entitled 82 Portraits and 1 Still Life, the exhibition is said to offer an insight into Hockney’s life in Los Angeles, his connections to the art world and the people who have crossed his path in recent years. Each portrait was created within the specific time frame of just three days, which Hockney describes as “a 20 hour exposure”, and over the last two and a half years.

Artist David Hockney poses for photographs in the Sackler Wing at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, where an exhibition of his work, is on display.''Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Artist David Hockney poses for photographs in the Sackler Wing at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, where an exhibition of his work, is on display.''Picture: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

The show marks his return to the Royal Academy, after 600,000 people visited his collection of vivid landscapes of the Yorkshire countryside in 2012.

After the exhibition, Hockney turned away from painting and from his Yorkshire home, returning to live in Los Angeles.

He slowly returned to portraiture, beginning with a depiction of his studio manager, and in the months that followed, he “became absorbed by the genre”, creating portraits of friends, family, and acquittances including John Baldessari, Celia Birtwell, Dagny Corcoran, Larry Gagosian, Frank Gehry, Barry Humphries, David Juda and Lord Rothschild, as well as his siblings, John and Margaret.

Each piece is the same size, shows the sitter in the same chair, against the same backdrop, and have been hung chronologically.

David Hockney RA: 82 Portraits and 1 Still Life is at the Royal Academy of Arts in London from July 2 to October 2. Visit www.royalacademy.org.uk for tickets and information.