David Hockney is an incredibly talented painter, draughtsman, printmaker, stage designer and photographer who contributed incredibly to the pop art movement of the 1960s and is now considered one of the most influential and technically gifted British artists of the 20th century.
Hockey has regularly expressed his love of swimming pools and one of Hockney’s most famous masterpiece’s, and our favourite, is ‘The Bigger Splash’ which he originally painted in 1967. Many of Hockney’s creations are inspired by water and the movement within the finished piece, and you can see within ‘The Bigger Splash’ that the calmness of the overall composition contrasts dramatically with the fierce splash of water caused by a diver.
Hockney has voiced his pleasure at taking two weeks to paint a moment that lasted two seconds and in a March 2009 interview, to the question “Who jumped into the pool?” Hockney answers: “I don’t know actually. It was done from a photograph of a splash. That I haven’t taken, but that’s what it’s commenting on. The stillness of an image. Most of the painting was spent on the splash and the splash lasts two seconds and the building is permanent there. That’s what it’s about actually. You have to look in at the details.”
“Water in swimming pools changes its look more than in any other form… its colour can be man-made and its dancing rhythms reflect not only the sky but, because of its transparency, the depth of the water as well. If the water surface is almost still and there is a strong sun, then dancing lines with the colours of the spectrum appear everywhere.”