Acquainted with the Night
In honour of the artist’s 80th birthday, this exhibition will take place in both of our galleries and feature a new series of twelve hand-painted intaglio prints in small editions.
A major new body of works on paper by Howard Hodgkin, one of Britain's most important living artists, form the basis of our exhibitionin celebration of the artist's 80th birthday. These 11 new works are remarkably different in feel to much of his earlier work; each is a surprising and powerful burst of energy, displaying brio and passion which, together, cover the spectrum of emotions, from a sense of deep foreboding in some, to joy, and, possibly, even anger in others. The exhibition title Acquainted with the Night, references the celebrated Robert Frost poem of the same name, often interpreted as a vivid description of the experience of depression, and has a particularly special meaning for Howard Hodgkin as it was the title of his first, and no longer extant lithograph print, made nearly 60 years ago in 1953. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with introduction by art historian, John-Paul Stonard. The exhibition catalogue will also be available in a deluxe version accompanied by a limited edition print in an edition of 50.
Hodgkin's paintings and prints often evoke memories and private experiences. Since the 1950s, he has made a substantial number of original prints and, for the last 25 years, has favoured heavily hand-painted carborundum and aquatint etchings which allow him to bring the physicality of the paintings into his printmaking.
This series of works, some brooding and sombre while others bristle with intensity and physicality, marks a shift in style for Hodgkin, representing a spectrum of emotions while combining confidently pared-down compositions with a sense of spontaneity that belies the extensive process of layering and over-painting by which they have been created.
Born in London on 6 August 1932, Hodgkin studied at the Camberwell School of Art between 1949 and 1950, followed by the Bath Academy of Art between 1950 and 1954. He has served as a trustee of the Tate and the National Gallery, London and in 1992 was knighted for his services to the arts. In 1985, Hodgkin won the Turner Prize and represented Britain in the Venice Biennale. His work has been the subject of numerous major retrospectives, most notably at the Metropolitan Museum, New York in 1995 and more recently, in 2006, at the Tate Britain, London, The Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid. His paintings and prints are held by most major museums including the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum, New York, the Tate Collection, and the British Museum, London. Hodgkin's previous print project, As Time Goes By, was a pair of monumental, 20ft long carborundum and sugar-lift etchings, which now reside in the permanent collections of the Phillips Collection, Washington DC.
Alan Cristea has been the exclusive publisher of Hodgkin's prints since 1987.