David Hockney (b. 1937)
Panama Hat
etching with aquatint, 1972, on Crisbrook handmade paper, signed and dated in pencil, numbered 24/125 (there were also 15 artist's proofs), co-published by Brooke Alexander, Inc., New York, and Petersburg Press, London, with the artist's copyright blindstamp, the full sheet, in very good condition, framed

Plate & Sheet 415 x 335 mm.
Brooke Alexander Gallery, New York, where acquired, 5 July 1973.
Scottish Arts Council 127; Tokyo 119
Special notice

Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.

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Lot Essay

This still-life of a coat hanging off the back of a bentwood chair, with a panama hat, pipe and empty glass on the seat, depicts the personal effects of Hockney’s great friend and early champion, Henry Geldzahler (1935-1994), then curator of Twentieth Century Art at the Metropolitan Museum. Geldzahler was a regular sitter for Hockney, and in his memorable introduction to the artist’s autobiography of 1974 eloquently compares Hockney's fascination with the portrait with the cubist's love of still-life:
'Hockney has never been interested in the commissioned portrait. As he has become increasingly fascinated by exactly how things look and in finding ways to paint what he sees with greater veracity, he has turned quite naturally to drawing and painting his close friends again and again. They are his guitar, absinthe bottle and journal, the objects of his affection' (Henry Gelzahler in: David Hockney by David Hockney, Thames & Hudson, London, 1974, p. 9).
In this etching Hockney seems to be taking his friend quite literally, depicting him as a still-life.

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