Untitled [Seated portrait of Michael and Anne Upton]

David Hockney

Michael Upton studied painting at the Royal College of Art at the same time as David Hockney. He was described as a "louche, dashing figure, the essence of Sixties cool, good-looking, enigmatic, gregarious." No wonder Hockney liked him. He once said that he was only a painter because he couldn't do anything else; that what he had really wanted to be was a rock star, which is at odds with the observation that he painted "small, quiet, beautiful gouaches in a time when everyone else seemed to be doing big messy paintings".

Upton married Anne McKechnie in 1964, and the present portrait of the young married couple holds no hint that their marriage would be dissolved shortly thereafter. Upton went on to teach painting at the Royal Academy, re-married to a Biba model, and generally lived a life of some irresponsibility.

David Hockney (b.1937)
Untitled [Seated portrait of Michael and Anne Upton]
Graphite and wax crayon on paper
12 5/8 x 20 in : 32.0 x 51.0 cm
Signed with the artists initials and dated D.H '65 lower right
Galleria La Medusa Rome; Private collection (acquired from the above, 1975); Christie's London, their sale February 14, 2014 [Lot 00230]; Van De Weghe Fine Art, New York
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