News / Art

David Hockney auction makes a bigger splash and sets record for a living artist


Andy Warhol: David Hockney (1973)
Copyright The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / DACS / Artimage

David Hockney’s Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) is a nice painting. In fact, we’d go so far as to say that it is a really nice painting. It is also the most valuable artwork made by a living artist, having been sold for a staggering $90.3m at a sale in New York last night (15 November).

The sale, which took place at Christie’s, saw the Bradford-born, cigarette-smoking, national treasure obliterate the previous record, held by postmodernist, neo-pop art don dada Jeff Koons. Koons’ Balloon Dog (Orange) only made a paltry $58.4m when it went to auction back in 2013.

For $90m – which buys you one top-rated European footballer or 1960784 medium sized Extra Value Big Mac meals – the new owner, who is reported to be Tottenham Hotspur owner Joe Lewis, gets to gaze at one of the 20th century’s most iconic artworks, day in, day out, until it starts to have about as much significance as that ELCAF 2013 poster you’ve had blue-tacked to your wall for the past five years.

Why not celebrate Hockney’s financial success by taking eight and a half minutes out of your day to watch A Practice For Everyday Life’s Nicer Tuesdays talk about the work that went into the David Hockney they produced for the painter’s absurdly-well-visited Tate show a few years back?