Assignment 4 Research – Part 1

I have chosen to use David Hockney and his ‘joiners’ for my essay subject and plan to answer the following question:

What is your opinion of the relationship between the creative aspects of David Hockney’s ‘joiner’ photographs, the message that Hockney is trying to convey, and to what extent you feel that photography is a necessary part of the process?

From the book ‘Photographs By David Hockney’ and websites like https://thedavidhockneyfoundation.org/chronology/1982 and https://www.dailyartmagazine.com/david-hockney-photographs/ I have made some notes about how these photographs came about:

  • Joiners came about because Hockney didn’t like the fact that photography was so static
  • He didn’t like that there was a lack of time in photographs – it is almost too frozen
  • In paintings and drawings, there can be layers of work, layers of pencil, layers of paint, and they are produced over time. You could never produce a traditional work of art in the time it takes to snap a quick photograph
  • You can’t really play with perspective in a single photo the way you can with other art. The closest you get is using a fisheye lens
  • Nowadays, digital cameras can easily produce panoramic photos that cover larger areas, or several different adjacent areas, but when Hockney started making his joiners, you could photograph only what you could see in your viewfinder
  • Hockney wanted to expand the ‘space’ that a photograph could cover, as well as showing a sense of time passing
  • The joiner was born when he was left with some polaroid film and decided to experiment by taking lots of photos, in a grid format, of three areas of his home and joining them together
  • He eventually moved on from Polaroids to a pocket camera and no longer arranged the photos in a grid, but overlapped them at many different angles

The South Bank Show made a documentary about Hockney and his joiner photographs which can be seen below:

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