Rare Hockney Ceramic Cat Sculpture to Hit Auction

Once gifted by the British artist to a couple who sheltered him during a storm.

Art
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In 1955, David Hockney was hitchhiking back to London from Bedfordshire when suddenly a storm poured down. Drenched, he and fellow Bradford School of Art student Norman Stevens took shelter at a cottage owned by Peter and Wendy Richards. The prolific artist never forgot the couple’s act of kindness and would gift them a ceramic cat as a token of his appreciation.

Now in his 90s, Peter has decided to auction off the sculpture, entitled Cat of Kindness, to help the younger members of his family. The artwork is the first of six feline sculptures Hockney created during his youth, which he’d donate as gifts. Hockney maintained a lifelong friendship with the Richards family, sending them Christmas cards, drawings, and notes routinely over the years. “It’s good karma, it’s a wonderful story,” said Dr David MacGregor, an expert at Stacey’s Auctioneers and Valuers, to which the sculpture will be sold from.

Cat of Kindness comes with an estimate of $48,309 USD when it hits auction on October 23.

For more on art, Claire Tabouret and Pierre Yovanovitch collaborate on new Asymmetry chairs.

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