Howard Hodgkin

Annie Lee | Feb 3, 2023

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Sir Gordon Howard Eliott Hodgkin (London, August 6, 1932 - London, March 9, 2017) was a British painter and printmaker.


Howard Hodgkin was born Aug. 6, 1932, in Hammersmith and was the son of Eliot Hodgkin (1905-1973), an Imperial Chemical Industries executive and amateur horticulturist, and Katherine, a botanical illustrator. During World War II, Eliot was an officer in Britain's Royal Air Force before rising to the rank of Wing commander and becoming assistant to journalist Sefton Delmer during his black propaganda campaign against Nazi Germany.

During World War II, Hodgkin was evacuated with his mother and sister to Long Island, New York. After returning to his homeland, he studied at Eton College and then at Bryanston School in Dorset. However, since he had wanted to be an artist since he was a child, Hodgkin decided to study at Camberwell Art School and later at Bath Academy of Art in Corsham, where he was a teacher of Edward Piper.

Early career years

One of Hodgkin's earliest known paintings is Memoirs (1949), which depicts the artist at age 17 listening to a female subject lying on a couch. The work's angular shapes and black outlines anticipate some of the hallmarks of Hodgkin's future abstract style.

Hodgkin's first solo exhibition was held in London in 1962.

In 1980, Hodgkin was invited by John Hoyland to exhibit his work during the Hayward Annual at the Hayward Gallery. Other artists in the show included Gillian Ayres, Basil Beattie, Terry Setch, Anthony Caro, Patrick Caulfield and Ben Nicholson.

In 1981, Hodgkin collaborated with Richard Alston of the Rambert Dance Company on the choreography and costumes for Night Music (1981) and Pulcinella (1987) by the British choreographer.

In 1984, Hodgkin represented Britain at the Venice Biennale and won the Turner Prize the following year.

The 1990s

During the early 1990s, the British artist was called back to New Delhi, India, to decorate the mural on the facade of the British Council, a building that had been completed in 1992 by architect Charles Correa. Hodgkin designed a banyan tree spreading its branches across the walls, symbolizing the influence of the British Council in Indian culture. Referring to Correa, Hodgkin stated that he "is the most perfect architect imaginable. He initially suggested that I design an Indian flag that turns into a Union Jack. I told him 'no.'"

In 1995, Hodgkin printed the Venetian Views series, which depicts the same view of Venice during four different hours of the day. One of those prints, Venice, Afternoon, consists of 16 sheets

The two thousand years

In 2006, a major retrospective exhibition dedicated to Hodgkin was organized at the Tate Britain in London, and in the same year, The Independent included the painter in its list of the hundred most influential gay personalities in the United Kingdom because he would allow others to express their emotions through his creations.

In September 2010, Hodgkin and five other British artists (John Hoyland, John Walker, Ian Stephenson, Patrick Caulfield and R. B. Kitaj) exhibited their work in an exhibition entitled The Independent Eye: Contemporary British Art From the Collection of Samuel and Gabrielle Lurie at the Yale Center for British Art.

Hodgkin died in a London hospital at the age of 84 on March 9, 2017.


  1. Howard Hodgkin
  2. Howard Hodgkin
  3. ^ a b c d e Wroe, Nicholas (24 March 2001). "The colour of emotion". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 March 2017.
  4. ^ Jeffries, Stuart (27 July 2012). "'There's less time, so on one goes' Howard Hodgkin at 80" – via The Guardian.
  5. ^ Lee Richards (2010). The Black Art: British Clandestine Psychological Warfare against the Third Reich. pp. 29–30. ISBN 978-0-9542936-2-8. Retrieved 9 March 2017.
  6. ^ "Gordon Howard Eliot Hodgkin was born on 6 August in Hammersmith, London. His first name came from his maternal grandfather, Gordon Hewart, a draper – Howard Hodgkin". Archived from the original on 12 March 2017.
  7. ^ a b c (EN) Howard Hodgkin, su URL consultato il 7 maggio 2020.
  8. ^ a b c (EN) The colour of emotion, su URL consultato il 7 maggio 2020.
  9. ^ (EN) 'There's less time, so on one goes' Howard Hodgkin at 80, su URL consultato il 7 maggio 2020.
  10. ^ (EN) Lee Richards, The Black Art: British Clandestine Psychological Warfare against the Third Reich,, 2010, p. 30.
  12. SNAC (angol nyelven). (Hozzáférés: 2017. október 9.)
  13. artanddesign/2012/jul/28/howard-hodgkin-saturday-interview
  14., 2017. március 9.
  15. BnF források (francia nyelven)
  16. diverse werken
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