Innovative and eternally productive, David Hockney continues to dazzle the art world and market as one of the most prolific Modern British Artists. Hockney is technologically innovative to this date, as witnessed in his recent - and triumphant - show at Lightroom London. Hockney's trailblazing oeuvre is reflected in his phenomenal print market performance, with his market size increasing by 121.82% since 2017.
Discover Hockney's dominant presence in the 2023 art market, delving into his highest-selling prints from his iconic series. These works have elevated his art into a blue-chip commercial brand, making him one of the most coveted artists in the industry. Download our latest market report, The Print Report: The Market's Most Wanted in 2023.
UPDATED OCTOBER 2023
In the last five years, Hockney’s art market has displayed exceptional growth, as revealed in our Modern British Prints Market Report, showcasing a remarkable +120% increase over this period, an 18% rise in transaction volume, and an 87% surge in ASP, resulting in a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13%.
Although 2020 experienced a 33% dip occurring in the wake of the pandemic, the rising ASP has driven strong value growth in Hockney’s mature market. In Q1 of 2023 the ASP of an individual artwork was £21,920. While many factors including edition size, year, condition, and provenance impact the value of each piece, Hockney’s consistent innovation across diverse mediums, particularly in print works, underscores his fluid approach and renowned market success. Unlike some blue chip artists whose markets plateau, Hockney’s resilience and versatility as an artist allowed him to rebound, showcasing enduring positive trends amid generational market shifts, continually attracting new buyers into his influential oeuvre.
In the early months of 2023, Hockney’s art sales demonstrated remarkable strength at Christie’s auctions in both New York and London. The auction debut of Hockney’s Yosemite II, October 16th, 2011 (2011), realised $378,000 (USD). Additionally, a digital iPad drawing titled More Flowers On A Table fetched £56,700, highlighting the growing popularity of his digital creations. These initial sales also showcased a keen interest in Hockney’s lesser-known series; a rare piece titled Mist (1973) from The Weather Series set a record by selling for $44,100(USD).
As the art calendar moved into Q2, additional records were established in Hockney’s market. Bonhams set a record with The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate, East Yorkshire, in 2011 (2011), realising £277,500. At Christie’s, a complete set of A Rake’s Progress reached $541,800 (USD) against a high estimate of $350,000 (USD). Sotheby’s April print sales further underscored Hockney’s appeal, with three works presented as one lot titled David Hockney Will Come:11 Works from the David Hockney Will Come series fetching $38,100 (USD) against a modest high estimate of $4,000 (USD). This particular sale demonstrates tremendous drive and demand for unique and lesser known works. Our April auction report covered seven auctions, and Hockney’s works achieved a combined turnover of approximately $1.8 million (USD).
In June, Bonhams offered 16 print works by Hockney, with his swimming pool-themed pieces dominating the sales. However, unique paper works were also featured in the June evening marquee sales. Green Pool with Diving Board and Shadow (Paper Pool 3) (1978), set records, selling at Christie’s 20th/21st Century sale for £2.3 million. In September Q3, Phillips London hosted a dedicated sale featuring exclusively Hockney artworks, following the resounding success of the initial dedicated sale in 2022. Despite a smaller number of lots, the event achieved another flawless performance, mirroring the previous success. Concurrently, Hockney’s works surpassed their presale estimates in live and online auctions at Bonhams and Christie’s, showcasing his enduring appeal and esteemed position as a prominent figure in Contemporary Art.
Within the vibrant tapestry of Hockney’s art market, the prevailing trends are shaped by the fervent demand for his diverse series. Among these, two standout collections have consistently captivated collectors: The Arrival of Spring, showcasing his digital iPad drawings, and the iconic Swimming Pool series, both a testament to his artistic interests.
Inspired by his move to Los Angeles in 1964, Hockney’s turquoise pool creations became an emblematic motif. The allure of these swimming pool scenes remains undiminished in 2023. Sales soared for works like Pool Made With Paper And Blue Ink For Book and various versions of Lithograph Of Water Made Of Lines from the 1980s. These pieces engaged in fierce competition at multiple auction houses, often setting new record prices in the process.
Hockney’s iPad drawings, both timeless and captivating, offer picturesque glimpses into the English landscape and the enchanting vistas of Yosemite National Park in California. His latest digital prints, part of the Flowers series, continue this tradition. Each work within these series presents imagery and scenes that possess an undeniable charm, making them highly coveted among a wide array of collectors and enthusiasts.
While Hockney’s top 10 2023 sales are dominated by The Arrival of Spring series, a distinctive trend took shape in 2023, revealing a heightened interest and demand for Hockney’s earlier creations spanning the 1960s to the 1970s. Notable examples include pieces from the Illustrations For Six Fairy Tales From The Brothers Grimm, with at least 12 artworks making appearances across major auction houses this year.
Rain (1973), from The Weather Series appeared for the first time since 2017 and realised £107,100 at Christie’s, a 167% growth in sales value. Additionally, Rue De Seine (1972), from Hockney’s Interiors and Exteriors, set a new record at Christie’s realising £50,400. This trend paints a vivid picture of Hockney’s artistic journey, showcasing the diversity of his oeuvre and offering a glimpse into his rich practice and art historical timeline.
As one of the most popular Modern British Artists, Hockney's top-selling prints frequently bring six to seven figures at public and private sale. With his unparalleled approach to various mediums, Hockney's prints are compelling to a wide-reaching audience of art collectors.
Here are Hockney's top 5 most performing prints in 2023:
A Rake's Progress (1961-1963) consists of 16 etchings by Hockney, reimagining William Hogarth's 18th-century series of the same name. Initially planned as 24 etchings, printing challenges led to the final count of 16. This portfolio traces the journey of a young gay man in the city, blending Hogarth's original narrative with Hockney's autobiographical elements. The decline of Hogarth's character is mirrored in Hockney's protagonist, reflecting societal shifts.
Completed in 1963, this early Hockney work gained significant traction in 2023, reflecting his rising popularity. Hockney's art communicates universally, embracing honesty and humour. The complete set reappeared at Christie's in April 2023, marking its first appearance since 2017 and only the third time at auction. Surpassing its previous record of £15,625, it sold for an impressive £435,482 (with fees), solidifying its position as Hockney's top-selling print in 2023 and showcasing substantial value appreciation over five years.
In January 2023, Hockney's Dog Wall (complete set) (1987) fetched £327,600 (with fees) at Phillips, marking his second highest sale in 2023 and setting an auction record. This set of 15 etchings surpassed its previous sale price at Sotheby's in November 2015, demonstrating a 3.6-fold increase in value over an eight-year period. Complete sets, especially from American Pop and Contemporary artists, including Andy Warhol and Damien Hirst, have gained increased collector interest. Dog Wall pays tribute to Hockney's beloved dachshunds, Stanley and Little Boodgie. Hockney's talent lies in capturing charming and universal imagery, making his works highly appealing.
Part of Hockney's acclaimed series, these en plein air sketches are also featured in his immensely popular iPad drawings. Consisting of 20 prints, Hockney's Yosemite artworks initially entered the market in 2010, fetching tens of thousands. Today, their value has soared to the hundreds of thousands. Yosemite II, October 16th, 2011 (2011) from this series appeared twice on the secondary market, first in 2020 and again in March 2023, achieving a sale price of £313,902 (with fees). This marked a 5% increase from its previous sale, securing its position as Hockney's third top-selling print in 2023, highlighting the enduring allure of these sought-after pieces.
Caribbean Tea Time (1987) is a notable piece from Hockney's Interiors and Exteriors series from the 1980s. What sets these works apart is the absence of a sitter; instead, the focus is on the intimate interplay between interior and exterior spaces. This particular artwork features vibrant colours in an abstract cubist format and is presented on a folding screen. Remarkably rare in the market, it resurfaced in May 2023, fetching £303,305 (with fees). In a previous sale in 2021, it sold for £94,302 (with fees), marking a significant increase of 3.2 times in value. With six appearances in the secondary market, each sale has demonstrated a consistent uptrend, showcasing the enduring strength and resilience of Hockney's market influence.
Another gem from Hockney's Digital Drawings collection, The Arrival Of Spring In Woldgate East Yorkshire 6th May 2011 (2011), is part of The Arrival of Spring series. Limited to editions of 25, these pieces have consistently grown in desirability and value over time. This specific artwork made headlines at Bonhams in April 2023, setting a record as the highest-selling piece from the series and securing a spot among Hockney's top print sellers for 2023. It fetched £277,200 (with fees), marking its second appearance on the secondary market and an impressive 2.79 times increase in sales value since its initial sale in 2018.
WRITTEN: APRIL 2023
David Hockney (English b. 1937) is widely regarded as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. His work speaks to broad audiences with high-profile sales in Europe, the United States, and Asia.
Hockney’s five-year art market performance is unmatched as the YoY appreciation in sales value is reflective of an established successful career making him one of the most investment worthy artists to add to collections. With Hockney’s print market currently producing six to seven figure sales in top quality works. Learn more about Hockney’s top ten most investable prints in our Market Watch Report.
Hockney's print performance demonstrates fluctuations in yearly sales from 2017 to 2020 indicating typical periods of growth that are also impacted by spending power and other economic factors within the given period. However, the 2-year period of 2020 to 2022 shows tremendous growth, which is remarkable over a period riddled with economic concern as lockdown measures began to pivot and political turmoil began to surface. With a CAGR of 13% based on the ASP over the given five-year period, a Hockney print would likely have yielded a return of approximately 14,884 (£GBP).
A critical driving factor of Hockney’s market is the number of works that surface for sale, especially within the print market. Our data shows detailed quarterly evidence of the increase in prints that have hit the auction market YoY. Even with a high transaction volume of works, Hockney’s ASP has remained a consistent five figures YoY with an average ASP over the given period amounting to +21,000 (£GBP).
Hockney’s body of work is vast and he has a number of timeless series that attract a various buyers. Among his most sought after works are his iPad drawings such as Flowers, The Arrival of Spring in 2011, and The Yosemite Suite. Hockney’s Dog prints are proving incredibly popular among the secondary market, a complete set of Dog Wall series just sold for +325,000 (£GBP) at Phillips (London) this year. Hockney’s pool prints have never lost their fan base, which is why MyArtBroker will be keeping a close watch on, perhaps, overshadowed works included in Hockney’s The Weather Series.
Our value index blends public auction data and private sales data from our collectors network. Our market value index uses artwork & artist data and a Repeat-Sales Regression (RSR) approach. Using the sale price of individual prints to estimate the fluctuations in the value of an average representative print over a unique period of time.
Our algorithm tracks over 48,500 auction histories & our own private sales data across 3,500 artworks spanning 30 years, including signed, unsigned, APs, PPs, TPs and sets of prints & editions.
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