David Hockney at work on his iPad portrait of Stephen Hawking, showing from today at London’s Science Museum. Photograph © Judith Croasdell
Britain’s best-known painter meets the world’s best-known scientist. The outcome is a dazzlingly intimate birthday portrait of the wheelchair- bound Prof Stephen Hawking, captured in February at his office in Cambridge looking serene and fascinating with strangely luminous violet eyes. Today’s Science Museum blog reports:
“ IMAGINE BEING ABLE TO SEE the British artist David Hockney create a new work, stroke by stroke, before your very eyes. Now imagine this work is a portrait, providing an insight into the way Hockney composes his famous likenesses. Even better, the subject is none other than the distinguished Cambridge University cosmologist, Stephen Hawking.
For the next three weeks the Science Museum will display an animated version of Hockney’s portrait, running on the artist’s own iPad for more than three minutes and showing exactly how it was created. Visitors can see how his skill has evolved since he was first introduced to the Apple iPhone in late 2008 and then the iPad. Hockney draws with an app called Brushes which removes the need to cart around supplies, easel and palette… It is exhibited alongside a rarely seen Hockney line-drawing, dating from 1978, owned by Hawking’s first wife, Jane… ” / continued online
➢ Stephen Hawking: A 70th birthday celebration display at London’s Science Museum until April 9 … The book that made a celebrity of cosmologist Hawking in 1988, A Brief History of Time, broke records by staying on the Sunday Times best-sellers list for 237 weeks.
➢ More on Hockney at Shapersofthe80s: 1983’s landmark interview when he revealed “Suddenly I see cubism differently, more clearly”. Plus more of his iPad art
Ubermensch 1995, by Jake and Dinos Chapman: Hawking as Fiberglass “Superman”
➢ Thin line between art and hate: is this the most repellent work of modern art? “The Chapman brothers’ sneering sculpture of Stephen Hawking sickened me in 1995, and still does now. What do you think is the most hateful work of modern art?” — Guardian art critic Jonathan Jones writing in January … and Jones again today: “Hockney’s portraits of Hawking are important documents of what really mattered in the culture of our time. Like Epstein’s Einstein, they will still be looked at when much art that makes headlines is utterly forgotten.”
➢ Professor Stephen Hawking has filmed a cameo for TV sitcom The Big Bang Theory, due to be aired next month in the US (May in the UK) — BBC News reports: “ The famous physicist will appear in a scene with socially awkward scientist Sheldon Cooper, played by Jim Parsons. He previously recorded voice-overs for animations The Simpsons and Futurama. Last year, he fronted his own TV series Brave New World for Channel 4, which looked at new developments in science and how they might benefit mankind ”… / continued online