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My Parents

My Parents
Signed Print

David Hockney

Photographic print, 1975
Signed Print Edition of 80
H 183cm x W 183cm

Critical Review

My Parents is a signed print by British artist David Hockney, widely considered one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. Part of the Photographs collection, this print was issued in an edition of 80 in 1975. My Parents is a photograph depicting a painting of the same name that took Hockney over two years to complete. In 1975, Hockney had begun painting My Parents And Myself, a similar image featuring both of his parents, seated in muted poses. This work featured the artist’s own reflection, beamed back to the viewer by way of a mirror in a whimsical, self-referential mise-en-abyme that appears to pass philosophical comment on the true nature of an often elusive, closed-off artistic process. This work was abandoned, however, laying in Hockney’s Los Angeles home for over 45 years, owing partly to Hockney’s fathers fidgeting during sittings. Like My Parents, it had strained Hockney’s relationship with his parents, who at the time lived far away from the artist’s residence and de facto studio in Paris. For My Parents, Hockney persevered with a composition that was proving difficult to complete. The result of his hard work, finished in 1977, went on to become one of Hockney’s most famous works. In her diary, Hockney’s mother Laura once exclaimed her happiness that her son had returned to the project: ‘He’s started again on portrait. I ask what changed his mind. What influence? He says he has a new inspiration. I only want him to be happy and satisfied with his work. Nothing less will do!’

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