Prints and Drawings (Room 90), Upper floor

Exhibitions of prints and drawings are changed several times a year because long exposure to light causes works on paper to fade and discolour.

Changing displays

David Hockney: People and Prints
17 March – 24 May 2017

On display in G90a is a selection of Hockney’s prints made from 1962 to 1976. They complement the Cavafy prints seen on the opposite side of the gallery and focus on personalities closely linked to the artist. From his muse Celia Birtwell, the master printer Maurice Payne, his close friend the curator Henry Geldzahler to his great hero Picasso, Hockney deftly expresses himself through the etched line, marks on the lithographic stone and the sugar-lift aquatint technique, taught to him by Aldo Crommelynck, Picasso’s printer.

The prints from the early 1960s closely reflect the artist’s painting style. Pure line becomes Hockney’s dominant style across all media from the late 1960s to the mid-1970s and is clearly demonstrated in the 1969 drawing of his then boyfriend, Peter Schlesinger, also on display.

Hockney’s fascination with the great masters from the past can be seen in two recent acquisitions, The Student and Artist and Model, where he references his great hero Picasso in a print from the Vollard Suite (displayed alongside) and Homage to Michelangelo, where he quotes several Michelangelo drawings from the British Museum’s collection, one of which is on display next to Hockney’s print.

More about this exhibition 


Permanent displays

Two works from the department are normally on display in the Museum:

Grayson Perry, 'Map of an Englishman' (detail) 
Michelangelo, Epifania


Other prints and drawings can be seen in the Study Room.