Hockney ‘joiner’ photo collages

2017-04-17 01.14.46 am.pngDrawing with a camera

By 1982, as part of an investigation into cubism and depictions of pictorial space, Hockney began to experiment with photographic collages.

He combined dozens of successive Polaroid photographs, taken from varying angles, to create a complete image, or what he described as ‘joiners’. Making some 140 Polaroid works in a matter of months, these multi-frame images allowed Hockney to experiment with depictions of time, motion and the position of the viewer.

In Billy + Audrey Wilder, Los Angeles, April 1982 1982, we’re able to trace Audrey moving her cigarette towards her face and Billy bringing a small sculpture towards his eyes. Each individual Polaroid is taken separately but experienced simultaneously, creating a dizzying effect and ‘not the view you would see immediately’. This presentation of a subject from multiple viewpoints exemplifies Hockney’s interest in depicting a three-dimensional world through two-dimensional art forms. As the artist describes:

I was at the camera day and night […] the joiners were much closer to the way we actually look at things, closer to the truth of experience

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