David Hockney is considered one of the most influential artists of our time. In his large-format seasonal series Three Trees near Thixendale (2007/2008) from the Würth Collection, Hockney observes the atmospheric seasonal changes of nature in Britain, where he grew up. This exhibition will present Hockney’s work alongside selected depictions of landscapes from the collections of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, and reveal the painter’s engagement with the art of previous centuries. The various pieces will invite the viewer to consider the parallels between Hockney’s work and the work of those who inspired him.
This series of landscape paintings is typical of Hockney’s engagement with the natural environment of Great Britain. Hockney believed that photography could not fully capture the beauty of his childhood home of Yorkshire. He declared war on the camera, but at the same time used it as a technical tool to implement his ideas on a large scale. His recent landscape paintings fuse traditional and digital techniques. They reveal his engagement with the art of previous centuries, as well as his own decades-long observation and depiction of the North American landscape.
The Richness and Diversity of Landscape Painting This special exhibition in the Gemäldegalerie’s Wandelhalle places Hockney’s monumental landscape paintings from the Würth Collection – which the entrepreneur Reinhold Würth has been compiling for over 50 years – in dialogue with selected landscapes from the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin’s collections. Works from the Alte Nationalgalerie, the Gemäldegalerie and the Kupferstichkabinett provide an insight into the diversity and richness of landscape painting, a genre that David Hockney revived in his large-scale paintings.
Hockney in Dialogue: Inspirations and Influences In addition to paintings by old masters such as Jacob van Ruisdael, Meindert Hobbema and Richard Wilson, this special exhibition will also display pieces by Rembrandt van Rijn, Vincent van Gogh and John Constable, whose landscapes inspired Hockney’s work. The juxtaposition reveals similarities and parallels with these older paintings, whose technique, composition and perspective, as well as their atmosphere and mood, Hockney studied intensively.
Ongoing Influence and Popularity For the first time ever, this exhibition will bring these pieces into close proximity with one another and allow them to engage in a mutual dialogue. They not only testify to the importance of landscape painting, its ongoing popularity and influence, but they also reveal its complex and multifaceted nature.
A free, informative booklet in German and English will accompany this special exhibition. In it, visitors can learn about the various themes that the Four Seasons series brings up in relation to landscape painting, and make connections between the series and selected exhibits from the Gemäldegalerie.
Collaboration with the Würth Collection Following on from the 2019/2020 exhibition Anthony Caro: The Last Judgement Sculpture from the Würth Collection and the Kunstkammer exhibition Illustrious Guests: Treasures From the Kunstkammer Würth that opened in December 2021 at the Kunstgewerbemuseum, David Hockney – Landscapes in Dialogue: The Four Seasons from the Würth Collection on Display in Berlin is the third joint exhibition project in a four-part guest series from the Würth Collection at the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin.