The New and the Old and the New is a colour lithograph produced by David Hockney in collaboration with Tyler Graphics, New York. It was printed on white wove paper from seven plates. The all-over design unites loose and abstracted forms in a pattern of yellow, green, brown, ultramarine blue and red. The New and the Old and the New was produced in an edition of fifty. This work, and others by Hockney including Rampant 1991 (P12456) and White Lines Dancing in Printing Ink (P12457) were presented to Tate in 2004 by master printer Kenneth Tyler as part of the Tyler Gift.
Hockney’s output in the late 1980s and early 1990s is characterised by the wide range of mediums in which he worked, encompassing printmaking, painting, theatre design and ‘fax drawings’ (images produced using a facsimile machine). Many of these very different works have iconographic features in common, including a focus on curving abstracted forms, which often derive from the study of landscape. In The Sea at Malibu 1988, private collection (reproduced in Hockney, p.197, fig.233), the artist accentuates in the middle ground the undulating shapes suggested by land and ocean, shapes that find a parallel in the sweeping and curling blue form of Rampant. In his prints and to some extent in the paintings of the early 1990s, Hockney uses abstracted forms to create an impression of layering, rather than depth. To Hockney, the issue of layering that is often evident in collage, a medium in which he has also worked, is integral to the process of printmaking. He has explained: ‘When you are making prints your mind starts thinking in layers; you are separating colours and thinking in layers’ (Hockney, pp.117–21).
David Hockney, That’s the Way I See It, ed. Nikos Stangos, London 1993.
Sean Rainbird, ed., Print Matters: The Kenneth E. Tyler Gift, exhibition catalogue, Tate Modern, London 2004.
Paul Melia and Ulrich Luckhardt, David Hockney, Munich 2007.