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Hodgkin given Swarovski Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon award

Howard Hodgkin has been the first artist to be given the Swarovski Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon award. It aims to honour the lifetime achievement of one of our greatest artists. 

Hodgkin was chosen by a panel of art experts chaired by Iwona Blazwick, Director, Whitechapel Gallery; Stephen Deuchar, Director, The Art Fund; Ann Gallagher, Head of Collections (British Art), Tate; and, Jackie Wullschlager, Chief Art Critic, The Financial Times.

Asked who he would like to present the award, Hodgkin chose Martin Creed.

The following link is to Jackie Wullschlager’s article in the Financial Times celebrating Hodgkin’s award: Financial Times Article

Further information, including a short film made at the awards ceremony, can be found on the Whitechapel Gallery’s website: Link to gallery Website

Another article appeared in the Guardian written by Jonathan Jones: 'Hodgkin: "Once I stop painting, they should start measuring my coffin"'

Howard Hodgkin on Jamini Roy: BBC Radio 4 Documentary

Listen to Howard Hodgkin speaking about the legendary modern Indian painter Jamini Roy. Live on BBC Radio 4 at 11.30am on 06/03/14 and available to play online for 7 days thereafter.

From the BBC website:

"There was a time when British art critics declared that there was no such thing as fine art in India and that its sculptures and paintings were hideous and worthless. Mukti Jain Campion discovers the story of pioneering Calcutta painter Jamini Roy (1887 - 1972), who set out to challenge such colonial views and became one of the most successful fathers of Indian modern art.

In an apartment off London's Baker Street, Nirmalya Kumar, a Calcutta-born business professor, has amassed a unique collection which traces the evolution of Jamini Roy as an artist. It shows how Roy developed a distinctive "flat" style inspired by traditional village scroll painters - and then honed it over a lifetime.

Roy was keen that his art should be cheap and accessible and his paintings soon became immensely popular amongst ordinary Bengalis but also gained an international following.

Contributors include:
Professor Nirmalya Kumar, collector of Jamini Roy's paintings
Richard Blurton, curator of South Asian Art at the British Museum,
Partha Mitter Emeritus Professor of Art History, University of Sussex
Sona Datta, art historian and curator and author of book on Jamini Roy "Urban Patua".
Artist Sir Howard Hodgkin

Producer: Mukti Jain Campion"

Hodgkin in Toulouse, until 23 June 2013

Find reviews of the Festival at Toulouse at the following links (click to open):

- The Art Newspaper

Howard Hodgkin's exhibition at the Fondation Bemberg, in the Toulouse Festival curated by Jean-Luc Bustamante, continues until 23 June 2013.

More details can be found in the previous News post, below.

Hodgkin in Toulouse

Dates: 24 May - 23 June 2013

Howard Hodgkin will participate in the inaugural edition of the Toulouse International Art Festival in May 2013, with a solo exhibition at the Fondation Bemberg. At the invitation of the Festival's Artistic Director the artist Jean-Marc Bustamante, Hodgkin will be represented by twenty two paintings covering more than sixty years of his career, and borrowed from museum and private collections. The earliest work on show will be Hodgkin's celebrated 1949 painting Memoirs and the most recent, High Tide and Low Tide, completed in 2012. The exhibition marks his first exhibition in France since he showed Small Paintings 1975-1989 at the Musee des Beaux Arts, Nantes, in 1990.

Eighteen paintings will be displayed in three dedicated galleries at the Fondation Bemberg. The four remaining works will be hung in galleries housing the permanent collection. They will be in dialogue with important works from eighteenth century Italy, and nineteenth century France.

Toulouse International Art Festival

Fondation Bemberg

Place d'Assezat  31000 Toulouse

T. +33 5 61 12 20 60


Hodgkin exhibition in Bengal

A Howard Hodgkin print and painting exhibition has opened at Bengal Art Lounge at Gulshan in Bengal.

Jointly arranged by Bengal Art Lounge and British Council Bangladesh, the show is the first ever exhibition of Hodgkin’s works in the country. A total of 12 art-works of the artist have been put on display for the show.

To found out more follow click here .

Hodgkin talks about Pierre Bonnard's 'The Bath'

On the BBC iplayer


Handcoloured etching by Howard Hodgkin for auction at Christie's, London, in "Arts for Life" organised by the Chelsea and Westminster Health Charity

26th June, Christie's, Kings Street, London, in 'Post-War & Contemporary Art Day Auction'11.35am

Summer was a print commissioned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York in 1997. It involved etching and aquatint from two copper plates, with carorundum from two aluminium plates printed in six shades of green, with hand colouring in cadmium orange and cadmium yellow acrylic. Sixteen years later, now in his eighties, Hodgkin has reworked an extra proof of Summer by applying two brushstrokes of transparent black acrylic paint. He calls the resulting, unique work on paper Indian Summer. It displays Hodgkin’s characteristic fascination with the evocative nature of colour but it now also highlights his enduring preoccupation with mortality – warm orange and yellow bars slant across a cool green ground and frame, an effect intensified by the slanting black veil, capturing the tension between mellow heat and impinging autumn that the title suggests.

Howard Hodgkin (b. 1932)
Indian Summer
Signed and dated `Howard Hodgkin 2013' (lower left); signed with the artist's initials and dated `HH 97' (lower right)
Etching handcoloured with watercolour by the artist
11.3/8 x 14.3/8in. (29 x 36.6cm.)
Executed in 1997 and handcoloured in 2013, this work is unique
Provenance: Donated directly by the artist.
Estimate: £4,000-6,000

Click here to see a larger reproduction of the image

New Hodgkin print published in aid of the Terence Higgins Trust

Howard Hodgkin has made a new print, Multiplication, in an edition of 150 to benefit the Terrence Higgins Trust, a charity which fights for better sexual health.

Printed by King and McGaw, who were also responsible for the ArtFund's Brushstroke and the Olympic Games print, Swimming. Hodgkin's new print Multiplication involves 16 hand-pulled colour silkscreens, using ground lightfast Phthalo Green, Transparent Yellow Iron and Red Iron Oxides, Titan Buff (Titanium Dioxide) and Carbon Black pigment inks from Golden Inks, New York. These inks were applied layer-by-layer with a final matte varnish.

The hand-torn and sponged paper is Somerset white satin 300gsm, mould-made, 100 per cent cotton, acid free and made at St Cuthbert’s Mill in Wells, Somerset. The prints are framed to a design approved by the artist using conservation museum standards in a hand made solid oak frame 435mm x 375mm (finished size). The print is float mounted with archival tape onto ‘clay’ coloured conservation board, with thin oak slip, cotton core backing barrier and UV filtered acrylic glazing.

Multiplication costs £750, including the frame and is available from the Terrence Higgins Trust website:

Rome Exhibition Opens

Today Howard Hodgkin's latest exhibition of paintings at the Gagosian Gallery, Rome, has opened.

You can see images of all of the pictures included in the exhibition by clicking on the exhibition section in the tab above or following this link:


Alberto Fiz's essay, "Painting's Emotional Site", printed in the exhibition catalogue, can be read online in the Resources section of this website or by clicking here.

'Defying Gravity', Exhibition at Hackett MIll, San Francisco, CA

Dates: 22/02/2013 - 28/6/2013

Four of the artist's paintings will be on display and for sale at Hackett Mill in San Fransisco, CA, including one recently rediscovered painting titled "Lit de Marriage". This painting has now been added to the gallery section on this website.

From the Hackett Mill press release:

"�Defying Gravity, The Subject of Space� explores an international selection of abstract paintings, collages, works on paper and sculpture from the post-war period, including work by Richard Diebenkorn, Joan Mitchell, Frank Lobdell, Conrad Marca-Relli, Robert Motherwell, Manuel Neri, Jack Tworkov, Esteban Vicente, Brian Wall and Emerson Woelffer, among others. The exhibition features four rare paintings by British painter Howard Hodgkin."


Howard Hodgkin in conversation and exhibition private view, New Delhi


In this special event Howard Hodgkin discusses his life and work. Hodgkin designed the mural on the front of Charles Correa's building for the British Council in New Delhi, a large tree form which was executed in small, rectangular, hand-cut tiles of white Makrana marble, and black, locally quarried Cuddapah stones.

Venue: British Council Division, 17 Kasturba Gandhi Marg, New Delhi


"The Painterly Prints": an exhibition of Hodgkin's work, taken from the British Council Collection, is on display in the British Council Queen’s Gallery until 4 February.

More information can be found at: Blouin ARTINFO.

Hodgkin in Rome

Dates: 16 March - 4 May 2013

Howard Hodgkin will show twenty new paintings in at Gagosian Gallery, Rome, his first solo exhibition in the city since he showed Seven Small Pictures at the British School in 1992. The new paintings have been created over the last three years in Hodgkin�s studios in London and Normandy. The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by Alberto Fiz.

Gagosian Gallery, Rome

Via Francesco Crispi 16
00187 Rome

T. 39.06.4208.6498


Hours: Tue-Sat 10:30-7 & by appointment

Upcoming auction Lots

Sotheby's Evening 26/6/12

Lot 34, Interior Grosvenor Square
Estimate £100,000 - 150,000

Lot 45, Rain at Il Palazzo
Estimate £250,000 - 350,000

Sotheby's Day Sale 27/6/12

Lot 179, Deep Blue Sea
Estimate £100,000 - 150,000

Christie's Day Sale 28/6/12

Lot 247, Realism
£80,000 - 120,000

Howard Hodgkin for Designers Guild

A collection of unique Howard Hodgkin designs have been re-released by Designers Guild, including one brand new design. Abstract, textural and vibrantly coloured these painted patterns have been cleverly printed on soft linen and crisp cotton fabrics to delightful effect.

Text from Designers Guild, including Howard Hodgkin speaking about the relationship between textile and art:

'Howard Hodgkin is widely regarded as one of the most significant painters at work in Britain today and is renowned for his mastery of colour. He represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1984, was awarded the Turner Prize in 1965 and was Knighted in 1992. He was also the subiect of a maior retrospective at The Tate in London in 2006.

His first collection for Designers Guild in 1986 was an acclaimed success and now twenty five years later we are delighted and proud to announce a new incarnation of those incredible designs as well as a stunning new design, Brush. His distinctive, lavish colours and expansive brushstrokes are printed on fine linen and heavy cotton to produce a truly remarkable collection of fabrics.

“I am not a fabric designer but I’ve always been fascinated by the dangerous interaction of textiles and art. In the house I grew up in, my mother hung transparent beige linen in summer, and heavy red linen in winter. Other relatives favoured fabrics from the Omega Workshops. Margery Fry had the patterns repainted regularly, to keep them fresh. The Bloomsbury Group weren't great artists, but they had wonderful decorative instincts. It’s a dangerous liaison, between textile and art, if either partner is compromised. l don’t like the idea of fragments of Picasso’s paintings appearing on cushions, for example, yet Henri Matisse, Henry Moore, Paul Nash, Alexander Calder and Nicholas de Stael all dared to design fabrics. In 1986 I seized the opportunity, when Tricia Guild asked me to work on fabrics for Designers Guild. Shortly afterwards, when I was designing Pulcinella for Ballet Bambert I was happy to be able to use the fabrics for dancers' costumes.

Twenty-five years after that first venture, Tricia and her team came to my studio for a photo shoot. They hung lengths of fabric from the stanchions just below the ceiling and installed furniture upholstered in other fabrics from the series. lt was reassuring to discover that the original designs, Flower, Leaf and Moss didn’t look dated: they have been reborn, not just remade, thanks to an excellent British printer. And the new design, Brush, seemed to hold its own.”

Howard Hodgkin, London, September 2011'

Picture at Auction

'Deep Blue Sea' is coming up for auction at Sotheby's London in the June 2012 day sale. www.sothebys.com

Among Booksellers: Tales Told In Letters to Howard Hodgkin

A publication of letters written to Howard Hodgkin by the bookseller David Batterham travelling in France and Spain over a thirty five year period. Published by Stone Trough Books (George Ramsden). 51 Walmgate, YORK YO1 9TY tel: 01904 670323

Hodgkin London 2012 Olympic Poster Unveiled

Swimming, the poster designed by Hodgkin for the London 2012 Olympic games was officially unveiled today.

12 leading British artists were invited to design the official London 2012 posters, including Bridget Riley, Michael Craig-Martin, Tracey Emin, Martin Creed, Gary Hume, Rachel Whiteread, Chris Ofili, Sarah Morris, Fiona Banner, Bob and Roberta Smith, and Anthea Hamilton.

The poster is published in a print run of 500,000 at �7.00 each from www.shop.london2012.com.

Jonathan Jones in the Guardian commented,

'But to see Howard Hodgkin, grand old man of sensuous painters, reach into the deep blue to create a dreamlike metamorphosis of athlete and water, the diver and the pool, is beautiful. This is more poetry than mere poster.'

'Michael Craig-Martin's is perhaps the most striking - vivid colour with a stark, exhilarating message. But for sheer visual pleasure and clarity, Howard Hodgkin's Swimming, a tumble-turn captured in a few swathes of sumptuous blue, wins the day.'
Ben Luke, Evening Standard, 4 November 2011
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-24006189-colour-is-the-real-winner-in-a-tricky-contest.do is

'Blue Blob is New Olympics Poster'
Headline in the Sun, 4 November 2011

A special edition fine print is available from Counter Editions.

"Howard Hodgkin describes his paintings as representational pictures of emotional situations. For his Olympic print Hodgkin has created Swimming -- a deep, swirling mass of blue flooding across the page. The fluidity of the brushstrokes perfectly captures the movement of water and the sensation of swimming."

Printed by King and McGaw and published in a limited edition of 350, each print is numbered and dated and signed by Hodgkin himself. Each print involved 12 hand pulled colour silkscreens, using ground pigments from L. Cornelissen, light-fast Altramarine Blue Dark, Altramarine Blue Light and Cobalt Blue. They were further hand ground into the UV binder with a Srab and Muller and then applied to the print, layer by layer. The hand torn paper is 300gsm 'Somerset' white satin, mould-made, 100% cotton and acid free. Unframed price: �1,300; framed price: �1,500 (prices are inclusive of postage and packing costs when delivered within the UK).

All the designs will be on show in a free exhibition at Tate Britain during the London 2012 Festival which starts in June next year.

In 1984 Hodgkin designed  Welcome, the poster for the Winter Games in Sarajevo.

See the Hodgkin print on the Counter Editions website.

Prints in Modena

Laboratorio d'Arte Grafica Via Fratelli Rosselli, 21.23.25 Open Monday to Friday, 9.30 - 13.30; 15.30 - 19.30 Saturday and Sunday, 10.30 - 12.30; 16.30 - 19.00 The art gallery in Modena, Italy, presents a show of Hodgkin's graphic work 5-25 November 2011. It includes a focus on prints of palms.

At Auction for a Good Cause

As Time Goes By (red version) going, going for charity

Lot 420, to be auctioned on 10 November in the 2pm session of Sotheby's Contemporary Art Day Sale, estimate $80�120,000

Sotheby�s New York, 1334 York Avenue, New York 10021, USA. Tel: +1 212 606 7000

Part of Sotheby�s sale on 10 November was devoted to a charity auction, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Elton John Aids Foundation. Hodgkin has donated an Artist�s Proof of the 20� long print (originally published in an edition of 7, when it sold out), to be auctioned alongside works by Cecily Brown, Keith Haring, Jim Hodges, Tracey Emin and Jeff Koons. The sugar lift aquatint, incorporates carborundum and hand painting on 5 hand-torn sheets of Moulin de Gue paper and measures 96 x 240 inches.

'All of us at the Elton John AIDS Foundation are tremendously grateful to Sotheby�s and to all of the amazing artists who have so generously contributed truly special pieces to the charity lots for this auction,' said Sir Elton John. 'I am inspired by their great generosity as we kick-off our fund-raising efforts for the 20th year of the Foundation�s work.' The scope and breadth of effective HIV prevention messaging and education that the foundation is able to target towards at-risk populations is directly limited by financial resources.

Howard Hodgkin himself wrote:

'Earlier this year the Phillips Collection in Washington DC acquired both the red and the blue versions of my largest print, As Time Goes By. They hung them in a room on their own in the first gallery that Duncan Phillips added to his house, which became America�s first museum of contemporary art. I broke the journey to California, where an exhibition of my paintings was going to open at the San Diego Museum of Art and stayed in Washington to be on hand for the celebrations that marked the Phillips Collection�s anniversary. �90 Years of New� was their slogan. They installed the prints beautifully, up a few steps from a space devoted to well-mannered, soft-spoken British abstract art by Ben Nicholson and others. That heightened their impact. They invited me to a boardroom lunch. The people around the table had made the acquisition possible. The director, Dorothy Kosinski, directed the conversation which turned into the friendliest, best meant sort of interrogation. I was asked, �Why did you make those prints?� And I found myself replying, �Because I thought I was dying.� I�d been ill with hydrocephalus and was operated on, successfully, in November 2008. In some way, As Time Goes By was my response.'

It fetched $74,500 including buyers' premium

At Auction in London

Bonham's, Prints Sale, 29 November 1pm

101 New Bond Street
London W1S 1SR
+44 (0) 20 7447 7447

Click on each title below to view its auction details on the Bonham website:
On View in London:
  • 27 November 11am – 3pm
  • 28 November  9am – 4.30pm
  • 29 November  9am – 11am

Return to New York

Howard Hodgkin New Paintings 2007–2011
3 November – 23 December 2011

Gagosian Galleries, 5th Floor, 980 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10075, USA.
Tel. 212.744.2313. E-mail: newyork@gagosian.com

Opening hours: Tuesdays to Saturdays 10am–6pm
(Opening reception: Thursday 3 November, from 6 to 8 pm)

The exhibition includes:
  • After Whistler, 2010
  • In Egypt, 2007–2008
  • Saturday, 2005-2008
  • Early Morning, 2010–2011
  • Little Garden, 2008–2011
  • Dark Evening, 2011 (above)
  • Opera, 2003–2011
  • Knightsbridge, 2009–2011
  • Rain, 2011
  • Lagoon, 2005–2010
  • Red Sky at Night, 2001–2011
  • Breakfast, 20102011
  • Wine-Dark Sea, 2010
  • Ice, 2008–2010
  • Flowers, 2010–2011
  • Yellow Sea, 2007–2011
Richard Kendall writes in the catalogue which includes an up to date bibliography.

David Ebony interviewed Hodgin for Art in America the day before the show opened:


Norwegian Paintings Debut

Peder Lund Gallery, 22 October – 26 November 2011

Filipstadveien 5, N-0250 Oslo, Norway.
Tel. +47 22 01 55 55. E-mail: mail@pederlund.no
Opening hours: Saturdays 12 – 4pm or by appointment

The exhibition includes , An Open Door, 2008-2011; Arabian Sea, 2008-2010; Heat and Dust, 2010; Snowfall, 2010 (above); Deep Blue Sea, 2009-2010; Snow Cloud, 2009-2010; Rain on the Pane, 2009; In the Train, 2002-2009; Collage, 2004-2008; Croissant, 2008.

The catalogue takes the form of a lavish, beautifully produced hardback book in a slipcase, with a text by Asmund Thorkildsen that surveys all of Hodgkin's work from 1947 to 2011, with ove 50 colour illustrations.  It is published by Skira.

Åsmund Thorkildsen has followed Howard Hodgkin’s work closely over a number of years . As early as in 1987, Thorkildsen conducted a lengthy interview with the artist which was published in Kunst og Kultur and is available on this website, “En samtale med Howard Hodgkin” (A conversation with Howard Hodgkin). The same year, Norway's Henie Onstad Art Centre exhibited graphic works by Hodgkin.

In his research for Howard Hodgkin: The Thinking Painter of Embodied Memories, Thorkildsen has addressed the artist’s work and the description of Hodgkin’s paintings in the existing literature on the artist. In the book, Thorkildsen examines the evolution of Hodgkin’s painting from the 1980s to the present. This evolution is discussed in relation to how Hodgkin structures the painted surface both in dialogue with contemporary art and with art history in general. The book argues that Hodgkin’s paintings are representational, meaning that they are not non-figurative and that they reproduce feelings taken from experienced situations and are physical memories of these events. Thorkildsen wishes to formulate an understanding of the artist’s method, discussed in the light of the concepts pragmatism and phenomenology.

The book is on sale from Skira [ISBN (978) 8857211312] at 39 euros: http://www.skira.net/dettaglio.php?soggetto=&isbn=8857211312&back=ricerca-normal.php&page=&lett=

On View in North Carolina

Ackland Art Museum, USA

Coming Up from the Beach, 1970-1972 (above, oil on wood) will be on view in Carolina Collects: 150 Years of Modern and Contemporary Art from Alumni Collections at the Ackland Art Museum, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA from 9 September – 4 December 2011.

Hodgkin in Cardiff

Hodgkin in Cardiff

Venice, Evening, 1995, lift-ground etching and aquatint

Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales in Cardiff has acquired one of Howard Hodgkin’s most spectacular original prints, entitled Venice, Evening, 1995 thanks to the Nerys Johnson Contemporary Art Fund and the Derek Williams Trust which each awarded a grant of £9,000. The 16 part hand painted etching and aquatint will beautifully complement and enhance other Venetian works by artists in the Museum collection including Canaletto, Guardi, Monet, Whistler, Sickert, Brangwyn and Piper.

Before this acquisition, Hodgkin was not represented in Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales’ collection apart from one painting on long term loan from the Derek Williams Trust, Bedtime, 1991–2001. Venice, Evening will not only complement this painting, but will significantly add to the contemporary collection at the Museum.

National Museum Cardiff is one of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales’ seven national museums. The others are St Fagans: National History Museum, the National Roman Legionary Museum, Big Pit: National Coal Museum, the National Wool Museum, the National Slate Museum and the National Waterfront Museum.

Entry to each Museum is free thanks to the support of the Welsh Assembly Government.

Olympic Games Print and Poster

Hodgkin: Swimming

Since 1912 each city hosting the Olympic Games has commissioned one or more posters in celebration. Since the first Paralympic games was held at Stoke Mandeville posters have also been commissioned for the Paralympic games. Over the course of the last century a body of iconic work has been created and previous artists who have created a poster include Howard Hodgkin (Welcome, Winter Games in Sarajevo, 1984, above), David Hockney, Andy Warhol and RB Kitaj.

The 12 artists chosen to create the London 2012 posters are Bridget Riley, Howard Hodgkin, Michael Craig-Martin, Tracey Emin, Martin Creed, Gary Hume, Rachel Whiteread, Chris Ofili, Sarah Morris, Fiona Banner, Bob and Roberta Smith, and Anthea Hamilton.

Hodgkin’s Olympic Games Print and Poster, Swimming, will be published on 4 November.  The poster, in a print run of 500,000 will sell for £6.95.

Counter Editions will sell the print (from the afternoon of 4 November), in an edition of 400, silkscreened by King and McGaw for around £800.The print involved 12 hand pulled colour silkscreens, using ground pigments from L. Cornelissen, light-fast Altramarine Blue Dark, Altramarine Blue Light and Cobalt Blue. They were further hand ground into the UV binder with a Srab and Muller and then applied to the print, layer by layer. The hand torn paper is 300gsm ‘Somerset’ white satin, mould-made, 100% cotton and acid free.

Please visit the News section of this website from the afternoon of 4 November when the poster will be officially unveiled.

80th Birthday Print Show

80th Birthday Print Show

31 May to 7 July 2012

Alan Cristea Gallery in Cork Street, London W1S 3NU, will mount an exhibition of Howard Hodgkin’s prints to celebrate his 80th birthday.

The birthday will be on 6 August but, as Alan Cristea has said, ‘That’s not an ideal moment to open any show.’ The exhibition will look back at Howard’s long engagement with prints – he made his first, Acquainted with the Night, after a poem by Robert Frost, while still a student at Corsham College of Art in 1953. It has since disappeared: if anyone knows of a copy, please contact the website at howardhodgkinwebsite@gmail.com.

The photo shows Hodgin at work in the studio with the printer, Andew Smith, 27 October 2011.

Moonlight in Providence

Made in the UK, an exhibition at the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence (until 8 January 2012) includes this painting by Howard Hodgkin, Moonlight, 1972. The show celebrates the strength of contemporary British art but it also tells the story of a remarkable collection of 136 works that was bequeathed to the museum by Richard Brown Baker (1912–2002). A Providence native, member of the Museum’s Fine Arts Committee, and important collector of contemporary American and European art, he was renowned in the arts as a collector’s collector’ (New York Times). Based in New York after 1952, his reputation was built by quietly supporting emerging artists, many of who have become the most influential artists of their time.

He eventually amassed a collection of more than 1,600 works from the postwar period, including works by such groundbreaking American artists as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Chuck Close, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Morris, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, and James Rosenquist, as well as European and Asian artists such as Alberto Burri, Jean Dubuffet, Georges Mathieu, and Kurt Schwitters.

Baker bequeathed the majority of his collection to the Yale University Art Gallery and the balance to the Museum of Art, RISD.

“He never lost the thrill of discovering new talent, and, as he could afford it, continuing to support those whose work he had previously collected,” says curator Jan Howard. “Because the British works would be separated from the bulk of his collection, he was eager that they be judged of importance as a group.”

“As I obtained my Rhodes Scholarship from Rhode Island," Baker himself explained, "I feel that I am making a kind of gesture to England and to my native city by this gift.” He later lived in London during World War II.

A 64-page catalogue accompanies the exhibition, concentrating on Baker’s British art and including the works acquired by RISD since 2005 with the Richard Brown Baker Fund for Contemporary British Art.

Curators Judith Tannenbaum and Jan Howard also contributed to the book Get There First, Decide Promptly: The Richard Brown Baker Collection of Postwar Art, by Jennifer Farrell, et al. (Yale University Art Gallery in cooperation with Yale University Press), forthcoming in 2011

Photo courtesy Museum of Art Rhode Island School of Design, Providence.

Indian Collection

Visions of Mughal India: The Collection of Howard Hodgkin

Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (Exhibition Galleries 59 – 60, third floor)

2 February - 22 April 2012

Sultan Ali Adil II Shah of Bijapur Hunting Tiger, Deccan, c. 1660
Andrew Topsfield, the Ashmolean’s Keeper of Eastern Art, introduces the show, which he also curates:

    This exhibition of about 115 Indian paintings and drawings will show this outstanding private collection virtually in its entirety for the first time.

    Howard Hodgkin has been a passionate collector of Indian paintings since his schooldays, and his collection has long been considered one of the finest of its kind in the world. At times he has devoted almost as much effort to developing his collection as to his own work as a painter.

    The collection comprises most of the main types of Indian court painting that flourished during the Mughal period (c.1550–1850), including the refined naturalistic works of the imperial Mughal court, the poetic and subtly coloured paintings of the Deccani Sultanates, the boldly drawn and vibrantly coloured styles of the Rajput kingdoms of Rajasthan and the Punjab Hills.

    But it is above all a personal collection, formed by an artist’s eye. Artistic quality and emotional feeling have always mattered more to Hodgkin than narrative content or other aspects of an Indian painting. All of his Indian pictures are of an exceptional quality, and they tend in many cases to group themselves thematically: an obvious example is the large group of outstanding elephant portraits and studies, one of Hodgkin’s particular predilections. Some paintings also may vividly evoke the Indian scene, the daily life of a country that has inspired Hodgkin on his frequent visits over nearly fifty years. Others may simply show two or more figures seated quietly together in a room or garde, gazing intently in some unspoken emotional rapport. At the same time there is a great diversity in these pictures. Some contain exciting colour passages and juxtapositions, as one might expect from Hodgkin’s own work. Yet many others, less predictably, are uncoloured or lightly coloured drawings, whose art is all in the Indian painter’s expressive mastery of line.

    Twenty years ago a travelling exhibition of 42 pictures from the Hodgkin collection was shown at the Ashmolean Museum, as well as in Washington, Zurich and elsewhere. During the last ten years much of the Hodgkin collection has been on long-term loan to the Ashmolean. The purpose of the present, much larger exhibition is to show the Hodgkin collection for the first time both in its entirety and in its full maturity, after a lifetime’s constant improvement and refinement. About twenty of the works to be shown are recent acquisitions by Hodgkin which have never been exhibited previously.

    The exhibition includes illustrations of epics, myths and stories; gods, goddesses and devotees; ragas and raginis, or musical modes; royal portraits and scenes of court life; hunting scenes; and paintings of elephants, birds, plants and flowers.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue.

Woodwork by Hodgkin

The show of Hodgkin's paintings 2001-2010 at the San Diego Museum of Art was reviewed by W.S. Di Piero in the San Diego Reader. W.S. Di Piero is a professor of English at Stanford, and a recipient of Guggenheim and Merrill grants. He lives in San Francisco and is the author of numerous books of poetry and essays. His latest is City Dog (University Press 2009).

Hodgkin in Conversation with Andrew Graham-Dixon

Howard Hodgkin in conversation with Andrew Graham-Dixon, Modern Art Oxford, 26 August 2010. The conversation was filmed and is now available for viewing.

Why Paint Matters

Maureen Cavanaugh of San Diego's radio station KPBS talks to John Marciari, Curator of European Art, and his wife, Julia Marciari Alexander, Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs at San Diego Museum of Art about the two exhibitions on there until 1 May: Gainsborough and the Modern Woman and Howard Hodgkin, Time and Place, Paintings 2001-2010. For those of an impatient disposition the conversation shifts from the 18th to the 21st century after some 12 minutes and 41 seconds.

Time and Place: San Diego Museum of Art, California

Hanging In Egypt.

The touring exhibition of Hodgkin's paintings, 2001-2010, has reached its final destination, San Diego Museum of Art, California and closes on 1 May 2011.

The artist Dani Dodge covered the process of hanging the exhibition in her blog The Voice of San Diego, illustrated by the photos of Sam Hodgson.


As Time Goes By at the Phillips Collection

As Time Goes By (red) and (blue), Hodgkin's largest prints, are on view at the Phillips Collection, Washington D.C. until 8 May. They hang in the first gallery that Duncan Phillips added to his house. Opened in 1921 it became America's first museum of contemporary art. The two 20 foot long prints face one another and their impact is heightened by the approach, up some steps from an intimate space devoted to near-monochromatic, quietly English, small scale works by Ben Nicholson. Beyond the prints a room houses Torso, a painting that the Phillips Collection bought in 1971 in memory of Robert Cafritz.

The Phillips Collection celebrates its 90th birthday this year and has made a film in two parts about the conservation, hanging and storage of As Time Goes By, now available on Youtube. The technical details are riveting. Sylvia Albro, the museum's paper conservationist, describes using Korean paper for the hinges, cut with a water brush to ensure a soft transition to the back of the print, and stuck on with boiled and filtered Japanese wheat starch paste. The film shows the back of the print and highlights the embossed effects produced by Hodgkin's use of carborundum paste.

The red version of As Time Goes By is a promised gift of Luther W. Brady, who also helped the museum acquire the blue version, along with Mr. and Mrs. C. Richard Belger, Marion Oatsie Charles, Dr. and Mrs. Brian D. Dailey, Mr. Léonard Gianadda, Linda Lichtenberg Kaplan, Mr. and Mrs. Marc E. Leland, Caroline Macomber, B. Thomas Mansbach, Dr. and Mrs. Ronald A. Paul, Gifford and Joann Phillips, and Trish and George Vradenburg. Both prints were given in memory of Laughlin Phillips, the son of the museum's founder, who became director in 1971.

See further:


The Wizard of Oss on Hodgkin

 Jan Marijnissen is a distinguished Dutch politician, born in Oss.

Interviewed on television earlier this year he surprised a number of viewers when he chose
an extract from a filmed interview with Howard Hodgkin for London Weekend Television in


Marijnissen's book, Enough! A Socialist Bites Back, published in a revised edition, translated
by Steve McGiffen,
in 2006, is now available as a free download on line.

The British Labour politician Tony Benn said of it, 'Above all this book will give hope – at the
moment when we need it most.'

Brushstroke for the Art Fund

The Art Fund is an independent art charity in the United Kingdom that exists to save art for everyone to enjoy. They have helped place Turner's Bowes Tower in the Bowes Museum, County Durham; Ellsworth Kelly's drawings in the Hunterian Gallery, Glasgow; a still life by Jan Davidsz de Heem in the Glasgow Art Gallery; Sylvia Plath's portrait of Ted Hughes in the National Portrait Gallery etc etc.

This year they start a new fundrainsing initiative, Brushstrokes and invited Howard Hodgkin to paint the first one.

It is available in different formats, framed or unframed. Hodgkin designed the frame, incidentally.

A personal message for the recipient can be included to accompany any brushstroke you send.

Brushstroke card
The brushstroke is printed on Somerset enhanced radiant white velvet paper and supplied with an envelope.
Card 210 x 148mm

Framed brushstroke
Add a frame to your brushstroke. Printed on enhanced radiant white velvet 100% rag, mounted and framed in solid natural ash with acrylic glazing.
Paper 210x148mm
Frame 250x300mm

Limited edition brushstroke
This beautifully reproduced limited edition silk screened brushstroke (1 of 75) is signed and numbered by the artist. Printed on Somerset textured white 100% rag, each print is mounted and framed in solid natural ash and glazed acrylic.
Paper 251x361mm
Frame 360x470mm

Each brushstroke you give will directly support the purchase of further works of art for British public collections in 2011.

3 New Paintings


Snowfall, 2010
Oil on wood, 8 5/8 x 10 1/8" (22 x 25.7 cm)

Heat and Dust, 2010
Oil on wood, 13 3/4 x 16 7/8" (35 x 43 cm)

Flag, 2010
Oil on wood, 34 1/2 x 43 3/8" (87.6 x 110.2 cm)

Howard Hodgkin - the last English romantic painter

Spring Rain, 2000 - 2002, 38 ¾ x 42", 98.4 x 106.7cm, painting

Jonathan Jones reviewed the exhibition of paintings 2001-2010 (at Modern Art Oxford until 4 September) in the Guardian on 28 June and gave it five stars.

Read the review here

He returned to the topic in the same paper on Saturday 28 July with a remarkable, discursive essay, which has stimulated a debate on the Guardian website, with over 50 comments.

Andrew Graham-Dixon reviewed the exhibition in the Daily Telegraph on Saturday 7 August and it was reprinted the next day in Seven magazine.


On the other hand, the exhibition was ignored completely by the art critics of the Times and the Sunday Times.