David Hockney's Woldgate Woods sells for £9.4m at auction

Painting of trees by David Hockney Image copyright Sotheby's
Image caption Woldgate Woods, 24, 25, 26 October, 2006 depicts an autumnal scene of East Yorkshire

A painting by David Hockney has sold for $11.7m (£9.4m) at an auction in New York.

The Woldgate Woods landscape depicts trees near Bridlington, East Yorkshire. The piece, measuring 10.5ft (3m) wide, is made up of six individual canvases.

Auctioneers Sotheby's said the sale had set a new record for the artist, breaking his previous auction record of $7.9m (£6.3m), set in 2009.

The work had a guide price of between $9m and $12m.

Grégoire Billault, head of contemporary art at Sotheby's, said: "David Hockney stands alongside Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud as one of the pillars of post-war British art."

Image copyright AFP/Getty Images
Image caption David Hockney once turned down the chance to paint a portrait of the Queen, saying he was too busy with other projects, and adding he preferred to paint people he knows personally

Hockney, who was born in Bradford, started painting the scenes at Woldgate, a Roman Road between Bridlington and Kilham, and Warter 10 years ago.

His method of connecting multiple canvases to create one huge piece of artwork was devised because he was not able to fit the large-scale painting up the stairs of his Bridlington studio, Sotheby's said.

The picture of Woldgate Woods was included in a Hockney exhibition at the Royal Academy in London in 2012.

A major retrospective of the artist's work is due to open at Tate Britain in February following his '82 Portraits and 1 Still-life' show at the Royal Academy earlier this year.

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