Grimm’s Fairy Tales
From March onwards, Hockney is engrossed in a new series of 39 etchings, Illustrations for Six Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm, so much so that he makes very few paintings for the rest of the year. He works with Paul Cornwall-Jones, [NESTED]who has recently established Petersburg Press, and Maurice Payne does the printing. Reviewing Kasmin Limited’s exhibition of Six Fairy Tales for the Observer, Nigel Gosling writes: “The images are odd and touching at the same time …. Anybody (particularly if he also appreciates fine engraving) who sighs for the hard innocence of childhood and the weightless flight of its dreams should get a look at these little visions.” Aside from the editioned portfolios, a miniature book is published by Oxford University Press in a planned edition of 2,000; ultimately, more than 150,000 copies are sold.
They’re fascinating, the little stories, told in a very simple, direct, straightforward language and style; it was this simplicity that attracted me. They cover quite a strange range of experience, from the magical to the moral. My choice of stories was occasionally influenced by how I might illustrate them. For example, Old Rinkrank was included because the story begins with the sentence, "A King built a glass mountain." I loved the idea of finding how you draw a glass mountain; it was a little graphic problem. I included other stories simply because they were strange.
The Little Sea Hare
They’re more complex than my previous etchings. First of all, instead of using aquatints to get tone I decided on a method of cross-hatching, which I used throughout. I just stumbled across it, and thought it was quite a good way to do it. And then I found that you can get a very rich black by cross-hatching, then etching, then putting wax on again, and then drawing another cross-hatching on top on another, on another; the ink gets very thick …. It was a step forward for me in etching techniques.
The Boy Who Left Home to Learn Fear
Holiday in France
Hockney and Peter Schlesinger holiday over the summer with Patrick Procktor in the South of France; and with Celia Birtwell, Ossie Clark, Paul Kasmin, and Henry Geldzahler at Le Nid du Duc. In September, they visit the spa town of Vichy, before returning to London, where Hockney is the best man at the wedding of Birtwell and Clark. He immediately begins [NESTED]making sketches for the newlyweds’ double-portrait. He is also planning a painting from photographs taken in the park at Vichy. Painting is very much on Hockney’s mind despite Powis Terrace’s present status as an etching studio.
- Paintings and Prints by David Hockney, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, UK (Feb 21–Mar 15); catalogue.
- David Hockney, André Emmerich Gallery, New York, NY, USA (Apr 26–May 15).
- Etchings, Kasmin Limited, London, UK (opens Dec 10, 1969).
- Marks on a Canvas, Museum am Ostwall, Dortmund, Germany (May 18–Jul 13), travels to Kunstverein Hanover (Aug 10–Sep 7) and Museum des 20. Jahrhunderts, Vienna (Sep 27–Nov 9); catalogue.
- Exhibition of Paintings and Prints by David Hockney, Whitworth Art Gallery.
- Marks on a Canvas, Museum des 20 Jahrunderts, Vienna, Austria.