The Arrival from "A Rake's Progress"
1963

Paintings of couples

Hockney’s new paintings are delving further into the imagery of romantic and sexual intimacy, of couples observed in domestic interiors, or in shower scenes. Among these are: The Second Marriage, a shaped canvas suggesting a cube or boxed-in space, with seated bride and groom; [NESTED]Domestic Scene, Notting Hill, in which Hockney’s close friends Ossie Clark and Mo McDermott pose; and Domestic Scene, Los Angeles, based on a shot of two men found in the magazine Physique Pictorial (Hockney has not yet visited L.A.).

When you walk into a room, you don’t notice everything at once and, depending on your taste, there is a descending order in which you observe things. I assume alcoholics notice the booze first, or claustrophobics the height of the ceiling, and so on. Consequently, in Domestic Scene, Notting Hill I deliberately ignored the walls, and I didn’t paint the floor or anything I didn't consider important.

When you walk into a room, you don’t notice everything at once and, depending on your taste, there is a descending order in which you observe things. I assume alcoholics notice the booze first, or claustrophobics the height of the ceiling, and so on. Consequently, in Domestic Scene, Notting Hill I deliberately ignored the walls, and I didn’t paint the floor or anything I didn't consider important.

The Second Marriage, 1963
Figure for 'The Second Marriage', 1962
Hockney in front of "The Second Marriage"
Domestic Scene, Notting Hill, 1963

The great thing about showers is that you can see the body. The body is more visible in a shower, so it’s more interesting to watch somebody have a shower rather than take a bath, and that was the appeal, and of course the technical thing of painting water has always interested me, the whole subject of transparency.

Domestic Scene, Los Angeles, 1963

Play within a Play

Hockney is also exploring the theme of pictorial illusion, strikingly in Play within a Play. Toying with the pictorial conceit perfected by the Baroque artist Domenichino (Italian, 1581–1641) of painting the image of a tapestry, Play within a Play shows Hockney’s dealer, John Kasmin, standing before a tapestry but[NESTED] behind a glass surface. He raises his hands against the glass, which seems to separate him from the viewer—as if he is caught on the other side, within the image itself.

Domenichino’s idea of a very shallow space with a picture on a tapestry that has illusion and you don’t know whether the illusion is real or not, you’re playing so many games, and they are visual .… The figure is a portrait of John Kasmin. Kas had always wanted me to paint him but I’d never got round to it as I couldn’t really decide how to do it. Now it seems appropriate to trap him in this small space between art and life.

Domenichino’s idea of a very shallow space with a picture on a tapestry that has illusion and you don’t know whether the illusion is real or not, you’re playing so many games, and they are visual .… The figure is a portrait of John Kasmin. Kas had always wanted me to paint him but I’d never got round to it as I couldn’t really decide how to do it. Now it seems appropriate to trap him in this small space between art and life.

Play Within a Play, 1963

A Rake’s Progress

After two years of work, Hockney completes A Rake’s Progress, and the sixteen etchings are published in an edition of 50 by Editions Alecto. In the Times, Bryan Robertson calls them “a total success: edgy placing of images, a fastidiously dry sense of the juxtaposition of black and white and a highly individual formal sense, wiry but not untender, drive home at a spanking pace the up-to-date whimsically autobiographical version of the Rake’s Progress morality tale, based here on the artist’s own escapades in America.” [NESTED]The influence of Hogarth will become increasingly significant with the 1975 production of Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress.

They sold the sets for 250 pounds each, and I didn’t dare tell people the price because it was so outrageous I was ashamed of it; I thought etchings should cost two or three pounds each; 250 pounds—madness! But with the money I realized I could go and live in California for a year.

They sold the sets for 250 pounds each, and I didn’t dare tell people the price because it was so outrageous I was ashamed of it; I thought etchings should cost two or three pounds each; 250 pounds—madness! But with the money I realized I could go and live in California for a year.

The Arrival from "A Rake's Progress"
Receiving the Inheritance from "A Rake's Progress"
Meeting the Good People (Washington) from "A Rake's Progress"
The Gospel Singing (Good People) Madison Square Garden from "A Rake's Progress"
The Start of the Spending Spree and the Door Opening for a Blonde from "A Rake's Progress"
The Seven Stone Weakling from "A Rake's Progress"
The Drinking Scene from "A Rake's Progress"
Marries an Old Maid from "A Rake's Progress"
The Election Campaign (with Dark Message) from "A Rake's Progress"
Viewing a Prison Scene from "A Rake's Progress"
Death in Harlem from "A Rake's Progress"
The Wallet Begins to Empty from "A Rake's Progress"
Disintigration from "A Rake's Progress"
Cast Aside from "A Rake's Progress"
Meeting the Other People from "A Rake's Progress"
Bedlam from "A Rake's Progress"
Studies for 'A Rake's Progress', 1962
Study II for 'A Rake's Progress' (& Verso), 1961
Study I for 'A Rake's Progress', 1961

Egypt for The Sunday Times

The Sunday Times commissions Hockney to travel to Egypt in October, where he makes numerous drawings for publication on November 24. They are never published due to the paper’s coverage of John F. Kennedy’s assassination days prior. 

It was a marvelous three weeks. I didn’t take a camera, only drawing paper, so I drew everywhere and everything, the Pyramids, modern Egypt, it was terrific. I was very turned on by the place, and on your own you do a lot more work. I carried all my drawings everywhere and a lot of equipment, and I would get up very early in the morning. I loved the café life. Egyptians are very easy-going people, very humorous and pleasant, I liked them very much. It was a great adventure.

Standing Egyptian Figure
Ramses III in the Form of Osiris Karmach
Egyptian Figure with Outstretched Arms
Crouching Egyptian Figure
Sphinx Study
View from Nile Hilton
Rahotep and his Wife Nofret Sat in a Glass Case in the Cairo Museum
The Sphinx
Shell Garage, Luxor
Mr. Milo's House, Cairo, I
Mr. Milo's House, Cairo, II
Egypt
Cecil Hotel, Alexandria I
Alexandria
Shields, Cairo Museum
The House of a Man Who Had Made the Journey to Mecca, Luxor, Oct. '63
Yoghurt Salesman, Walking Home, Luxor
Object in the Cairo Museum
Luxor
Cecil Hotel, Alexandria
The Great Pyramid, Cairo
Waiter, Alexandria
Man in Front of Curtain
Flat Profile
Mr. Milo in his House in Cairo
Two Arab Boys, Luxor
Street Scene, Luxor
These Matches Belong to David Hockney in Arabic
Sculptered Head Balanced on a Stick
Man in Lobby, Hotel Cecil, Alexandria
Egyptian
Arab Sheltering
Sculpted Head
Reda, Age 17, Smoking a Cigarette, Cairo
The Great Pyramid with Palm Tree and Car
Man in a Cloak
Shell Garage, Luxor
Memphis

Pictures with People In

Hockney’s vision of Egypt—captured in a painting of the Great Pyramid at Giza made subsequently in his studio—debuts at his first solo exhibition at Kasmin’s gallery in London, David Hockney: Pictures with People In. His title for the show emphasizes his unique position on Kasmin’s roster as the only artist working with the figure. The critically acclaimed show sells out. 

Great Pyramid at Giza with Broken Head from Thebes, 1963

Second trip to New York

He takes off for New York at the end of the year. There, he meets Andy Warhol and Dennis Hopper, and begins what will become an enduring friendship with Henry [NESTED]Geldzahler, Curator of Twentieth-Century Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

Andy Warhol, Henry Geldzahler, David Hockney, and Jeff Goodman photographed by Dennis Hopper in New York.
Andy Warhol, Henry Geldzahler, David Hockney, and Jeff Goodman photographed by Dennis Hopper in New York.

Henry [Geldzahler] and I got along instantly …. We shared a love of music, opera in particular, which I had started to go to a bit, upstairs at Covent Garden, and there was painting of course, and we became friends very quickly. He was very, very funny, very clever, and we had the same kind of taste. I thought we had a similar way of looking at life.

Exhibitions

Solo

  • David Hockney, Bear Lane Gallery, Oxford (Jan–Feb).
  • A Rake’s Progress and Other Etchings, Editions Alecto Gallery, London (Dec 3–24); travels to Lane Gallery, Bradford; Heffer Gallery, Cambridge; and Prestons Art Gallery, Bolton (through 1964); catalogue.
  • Pictures with People In, Kasmin Limited, London (opens Dec 6).

Group

  • Group Show, Kasmin Limited, London (Jul 30–Sep 19).
  • 118 Show, Kasmin Limited, London (opens Aug 9).
  • British Painting in the Sixties, Whitechapel Gallery, London (Jun 1–30); travels to Zurich (Aug 29–Sep 14), Manchester, Glasgow, and Hull; catalogue.
  • Fifth International Exhibition of Graphic Art, Moderna galerija, Ljubljana (Jun 9–Sep 15); catalogue.
  • British Graphic Scene, Orell Fussli Buchhandlung, Zurich (Sep 2–27).
  • Troisième Biennale de Paris: Manifestation biennale et international des jeunes artistes, Musée d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris (Sep 28–Nov 3); catalogue; Hockney wins the Graphics Prize.
  • John Moores Exhibition, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool (Nov 14, 1963–Jan 12, 1964); catalogue.