June 29 Art Minute: David Hockney, "A Bigger Card Players"
David Hockney has created a body of work that is characterized by continual evolution and experimentation in different mediums. He is greatly interested in human perception, the nature of perspective, and the fluid relationships among drawing, painting, photography, and digital art. A Bigger Card Players touches on all of these themes. Hockney made this so-called photographic drawing in 2015, along with several paintings depicting variations of the same scene, all based on French Post-Impressionist artist Paul Cézanne’s series of paintings of men around a table playing cards.
Hockney took multiple photographs of his friends around a card table to create a digital “collage” for this work. “Each photograph,” he explained, “has a vanishing point, so instead of just one, I get many vanishing points.” The multiple vanishing points are especially noticeable in the trapezoidal shape of the table and the position of the three men—a visual playfulness echoed in one of his own paintings with a similar composition, visible on the wall behind the card players. The multiple perspectives in this work give the image, according to Hockney, “an almost 3D effect without the glasses.”
David Hockney (British, born 1937), A Bigger Card Players. Photographic drawing printed on paper, mounted on Dibond®, 2015. 72 x 69 3/4 in. (182.9 x 177.2 cm). Museum Purchase, by exchange, 2015.47