The Yosemite Suite by David Hockney

The Yosemite Suite David Hockney

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In 2010 Apple released the first iPad and Hockney’s printmaking technique was once again transformed. Having already experimented with lithography, etching and screen printing, he now turned to the digital to achieve his characteristically striking compositions in bold colours.

That same year Hockney took his iPad to Yosemite National Park in California and proceeded to ‘paint’ 24 views of this majestic valley using the Brushes app. The ease of using a digital medium allowed him to work en plein air just like artists such as Monet and Turner whom he admired. Before he would have had to use watercolour or pen and ink to make preparatory sketches before transferring the work to an etching plate or lithographic stone but with the iPad he could work directly onto the screen, picking and choosing from hundreds of shades of colour and thicknesses of brush without ever getting his hands dirty. And here colour abounds. The works recall his paintings and prints from the ’90s with their bold clashing tones – at their most extreme the prints depict bright pink roads, as in Untitled No.4, electric blue shadows and acid green trees. Elsewhere the colours are toned down and the contrasts subtly blended, as with Untitled No.20 and Untitled No.15.

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