York Art Gallery to display largest Hockney work

PUBLISHED: 00:16 25 February 2011 | UPDATED: 18:57 20 February 2013

York Art Gallery to display largest Hockney work

York Art Gallery to display largest Hockney work

A groundbreaking new collaboration begins between Yorkshire art galleries and the Tate, London

The largest painting ever created by iconic Yorkshire artist David Hockney has gone on show at York Art Gallery to mark the start of a year-long celebration of the arts.

Bigger Trees Near Warter measures 12m by 4.5m and is made up of 50 smaller canvasses of a landscape inspired by a copse on the outskirts of the East Yorkshire village. The paintings arrival in York marks the start of Art in Yorkshire, a year-long celebration of the visual arts in 19 galleries supported by the Tate, which will be showcasing some of its historic and contemporary art in a compelling programme of exhibitions and events throughout the county.

Tate director Nick Serota said: Its wholly appropriate that Hockneys remarkable work Bigger Trees Near Warter should be shown for the first time outside London at York Art Gallery. Standing before it, the viewer is overwhelmed by the beauty of the winter trees and the energy of the Yorkshire landscape. In this work he has deftly joined together the tradition of painting en plein air (in the open air) with digital technology on a monumental scale.

Hockneys painting was originally exhibited at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition before the artist presented it to the Tate. It took six weeks to complete, with the artist painting each individual canvas en plein air.

He has been creatively inspired by the landscape of the Yorkshire Wolds for the last seven years.

This particular work is of a scene just before the arrival of spring when the trees are coming into leaf. In the shallow foreground a copse of tall trees and some early daffodils stand on slightly raised ground. An imposing sycamore is the compositions central focus, with another dense copse painted in pinkish tones in the background.

The painting will remain on display in York before moving on to the Ferens Art Gallery in Hull from June 25th to September 18th and Cartwright Hall in Bradford from October 1st December 18th.

Other artists featured in the ambitious Art in Yorkshire series will include Damien Hirst, Henry Moore and Dame Barbara Hepworth.

This is the first time that some of the main galleries in Yorkshire have worked together to promote their fantastic exhibition programmes, said Janet Barnes, chief executive of York Museums Trust.

She added: We hope that people will be inspired by the art on show and take the time to travel around the county.

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