David Hockney has, in some ways been the victim of his own popularity. Frequently interpreted as the lightweight expression of a colourful personality, his work is characterized by an underlying seriousness of purpose. Each of the volumes's six chapters, broadly chronological in sequence is introduced by an essay that examines in depth certain aspects of Hockney's artistic practice. The complexity of his imagery is further elucidated in the commentaries accompanying each of the colour plates. These encompass the period from 1960 to 1993, from work produced during the artist's student days at the Royal College of Art in London to his most recent paintings, enriched through his experience of designing for the stage and by his experiments with photo-collage and fax art.
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