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David Hockney: Why I’m happy keeping busy at 83

Hockney also had a tip for anyone feeling ‘bored’ and ‘trapped’ in lockdown.

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David Hockney in front of The Queen’s Window, stained glass window at Westminster Abbey he designed (Victoria Jones/PA)

David Hockney in front of The Queen’s Window, stained glass window at Westminster Abbey he designed (Victoria Jones/PA)

David Hockney in front of The Queen’s Window, stained glass window at Westminster Abbey he designed (Victoria Jones/PA)

Artist David Hockney says his recent work has given him a “new lease of life”.

The 83-year-old has been in Normandy, France, painting the arrival of spring.

A show at the Royal Academy of Arts in London will capture the season with 116 of Hockney’s iPad prints.

The painter told The Andrew Marr Show he was surrounded by “hawthorn blossom … apple blossom, pear blossom, plum blossom, cherry blossom (and) apricot blossom.”

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David Hockney’s No 241 April 40, 2020 (Royal Academy of Arts/David Hockney)

David Hockney’s No 241 April 40, 2020 (Royal Academy of Arts/David Hockney)

David Hockney’s No 241 April 40, 2020 (Royal Academy of Arts/David Hockney)

He told the BBC One show: “I’m working away now because I’m 83. How much longer do I have? I don’t know.

“I’m still a smoker but working is very good for me. It gives me a new lease of life. I’ve got a new lease of life here.

“I’m just going to go on working here…  (there is) always something to do.”

The painter, previously known for his works depicting Californian life, added: “We live in a little seven dwarfs’ house in the middle of a four-acre field.

“I think it’s a great place, a wonderful place for me now.

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Artist David Hockney (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Artist David Hockney (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Artist David Hockney (Andrew Matthews/PA)

“I’m pretty deaf. I don’t really like listening that much any more. I prefer just working, so it’s fine for me here, absolutely fine.”

Hockney also offered a tip for anyone feeling “bored” and “trapped” in lockdown.

“If you’re bored because of the lockdown and you’re trapped in some small place, then if you look at the world and really look at it, it’s very beautiful,” he said.

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“It’s a mad world really but it’s very beautiful to look at. Nature is always beautiful, it’s always harmonious.

“But you’ve really got to look at it. You’ve got to look at it to see colour. You’ve really got to look at it intensely.

“I would suggest that’s what you do. Just sit down and look at it or walk and look at it, and it’s very beautiful really.”

Hockney is also planning to show “one big, long picture like the Bayeux Tapestry, which is going to be 88 metres long” depicting the whole year in Normandy, in a show in Paris.

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