Thursday, January 19, 2012

Oakeshottian Oborne...

Peter Oborne in today's Telegraph has an interesting piece about artist David Hockney and what his 'return tells us about the new mood in Britain' [Link]. The point being made is that Hockney is a [small c] conservative painter whose landscapes will be on public display at the Royal Academy from 21.1.12.; obviously it is nothing to do with which party Hockney votes for - Oborne continues - the Oakeshottian theme reflected in Hockney's landscapes is that of the great philosopher Michael Oakeshott wrote that "to be conservative… is to prefer the familiar to the unknown, to prefer the tried to the untried, fact to mystery, the actual to the possible, the limited to the unbounded, the near to the distant, the sufficient to the superabundant, the convenient to the perfect, present laughter to utopian bliss"; some semblance of truth in what Oborne says because Hockney himself said "Anything simple always interests me." Click on image for more.

Image: David Hockney, Rubber Ring Floating in a Swimming Pool, 1971, acrylic on canvas, 37 x 49 in. [94 x 124.5 cm.] Private collection. 

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Paul said...

What impresses and annoys me in equal measure about Hockney is his conservatism (small c) but I guess that comes with age (his not mine). Some of his photographic work is very good but he can't let an idea go, he's like the guitarist with one riff repeated fifty times. His large works made up of several small works are genius, unfortunately in the digital age we can all do it, but that didn't stop me looking at them for about twenty years on and off thinking "How can I do that?"

I like art that makes me think and his photographs have always done that his paintings less so.

Span Ows said...

I agree re the series of several works connected. Also I agree re photographs and paintings, I think to get just the right photo is far harder (but also a darn sight easier having dozens of goes) that with paintings.