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article imageHockney touches up tabloid logo ahead of retrospective

By AFP     Feb 3, 2017 in World

British artist David Hockney has turned his digital hand to Friday's masthead of The Sun, telling the tabloid of his painting and smoking habits ahead of a retrospective in London.

Hockney touched up the logo of Britain's best-selling newspaper by adding black shadowing to its lettering and a white sun, using a painting app on his iPad.

"I was delighted to be asked. Once I thought about the idea it didn’t take me long. The sun and The Sun -- I love it," he was quoted as telling the newspaper.

The 79-year-old's appearance on the front page comes ahead of a retrospective of the artist's work at the Tate Britain gallery in London, which opens on February 9.

"When I'm painting I feel 30 but when I stop I feel older. I'm a bit slower than I was but I stand up to paint every day," he told The Sun.

Hockney appears to have no wish to retire -- in November he was commissioned to design a stained glass window for London's Westminster Abbey, a month after unveiling a 500-page art book at the Frankfurt fair.

The limited-edition book is so large it comes with its own stand and weighs 35 kilograms (77 pounds).

Despite moving to California in 1963, Hockney has kept up with the latest politics across the Atlantic and said he was unsurprised by Britain's vote last June to leave the European Union.

"Brexit didn't surprise me totally because I'd been living in provincial Britain," said the artist, who was raised in a working class home in the northern English town of Bradford.

"The power has spread to the people because that's what the iPhone has done," he added, without going into greater detail of how he felt the smartphone swayed the referendum outcome.

Hockney's expansive career has seen him travel the globe painting portraits, while he has also been celebrated for his landscape paintings of the countryside near his hometown.

One of his most famous paintings is "A Bigger Splash", which captures the moment after someone has dived into a California swimming pool.

But despite his illustrious career, Hockney said he remains frustrated by the constraints his smoking habit has been put under by a ban on lighting up in pubs.

"Everywhere now has to be fit for Little Emily with asthma. It's all gone mad," he said.

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