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  • Hockney in Paris 

    Executed in 1974, Rue des Beaux Arts presents an interior scene- the perspective of David Hockney gazing out of a window onto the railing of a balcony. This work attests to a period of time when Hockney had moved to Paris to rediscover his skills as an artist. The present work on paper is lightly finished with colour applied to define the borders of the window and minor details of outdoor space. The few short years Hockney lived and worked in the French city was considered an escape as he explored ways to diversify his output after his successful body of work in the Victorian style, exemplified by Mr. and Mrs. Clark and Percy, 1970 – 1971.  He was much impacted by the death of his hero Pablo Picasso in 1973 and later the death of his father in 1978. Hockney channelled his devotion to the late Picasso into his works as wonderfully demonstrated in The Artist and Model, 1973-1974. Both Rue des Beaux Arts and The Artist and Model attests to the period that Hockney was trying to negotiate the balance between tradition and modernism and focused his time in Paris on cultivating his essential artistic skills, only working in drawing and prints and almost entirely giving up painting until his return to London. 'I think it comes from very deep within us actually. When all those people in the 1970s were trying to give up drawing, I did go and see them and they said: “Oh, you don’t need to draw now.” And I did point out: “Well, why don’t you tell that to that little child there? Tell them you don’t need to draw and see what happens.” Young people draw, they start making marks, everybody does.' —David Hockney

    • Provenance

      Private Collection, Belgium (acquired in 1977)

    • Artist Biography

      David Hockney

      British • 1937

      With a career stretching from the early 1960s to the present, David Hockney is perhaps best known for his bright, cheerful works depicting pools and other everyday scenes from his life in southern California. Originally from West Yorkshire, England, Hockney studied at the Royal College of Art in London before spending decades on both sides of the Atlantic. The artist got his start as part of the British Pop movement, though he’s also cited Modern masters like Picasso and Matisse as major influences on his unique style. 

      Having worked in mediums such as painting, photography, drawing, printmaking, sculpture and more, Hockney is among the most versatile artists of his time. Drawing on his lived experience, Hockney imparts obvious references to same-sex love and companionship in his work, a motif that began even before Britain decriminalized homosexuality in 1967. His work in present in the collections of institutions such as MoMA, the Pompidou and the Tate, which granted him a blockbuster career retrospective in 2017. At present, Hockney is one of the most expensive living artists to be sold at auction. 

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Property from a Private Belgian Collection


Rue des Beaux-Arts

signed with the artist's initials, titled, inscribed and dated 'DH. Rue des Beaux Arts Beaux Arts Paris 74.' lower right
coloured pencil on paper
65 x 48.2 cm (25 5/8 x 18 7/8 in.)
Executed in 1974.

Full Cataloguing

£50,000 - 70,000 

Sold for £100,800

Contact Specialist

Tamila Kerimova
Specialist, Head of Day Sale, Director

20th Century & Contemporary Art

+44 20 7318 4065
[email protected]

20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale

London Auction 21 October 2020