David Hockney’s hedgerows

Looking at pictures of  trees and foliage, I was reminded of the documentary David Hockney: A Bigger Picture . In the film, we see Hockney, having left life in Los Angeles, standing on the grass verges of Yorkshire country lanes with canvas and easel, painting the landscape in all weathers.

Here he has chosen a common sight of the English countryside, the hedgerow. I am interested in it because it is not a conventionally picturesque rural scene and could be unremarkable. He has included the road and a grass verge. It reminds me of a photograph and you get the sense that you are standing in the location. In fact, anyone could park at this spot and take a look. It has an unconventional composition and we look dead on at the elderflower which takes over the middle area. The simple house is tucked to the side.

Any hedgerow is incredibly complex. This painting makes me think of  the physical energy of the artist, (some of the paintings were done at great speed) and very intense study and ‘looking’ to make sense of the foliage and light on that particular day. There is also a great feeling of pleasure at that July day.

Elderflower Blossom, Kilham, July


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