In 1977, British artist David Hockney created a series of set designs for The Magic Flute for a performanceat Glyndebourne House in East Sussex, UK. In Outside the Temple, Hockney introduced images from the Déscription de l’Égypte to portray Sarastro’s kingdom and palace.The profile of Ramesses, figuring lower left, and the face resting against the obelisk on the right, are taken from the Antiquités, volumes II and V. An Avenue of Palmsshows an iconic Egyptian Hockney, blending the boundaries between California and the Middle East, evoking Hockney’s Egyptian journeys in 1963 and 1978. The Hockney works are shown adjacent to Karl Friedrich Schinkel’s stage sets for The Magic Flute(1815) in their aquatint versionsfrom Sammlung von Theater-Decorationen. Erfunden von Carl Friedrich Schinkel(Potsdam, 1847).
Loan from the David Hockney Foundation, Los Angeles
Photo: Eirik Bøhn
The Hockney paintings are part of the exhibition Images of Egypt, curated by Mari Lending, Tim Anstey and Eirik Arff Gulseth Bøhn and shown at the Museum of Cultural History in Oslo in autumn 2018. The exhibition is produced under PriArc: Printing the Past, a research project directed by the Oslo School of Architecture and Design, as part of the European Union Humanities in the European Research Area (HERA) programme. Together with the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and Musée d’Orsay, Paris, the Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo, is a museum partner in PriArc.