The artist David Hockney has begun a campaign to preserve a road near his home in Bridlington, Yorkshire that he cites as a major influence on his work.
Workers in the area are currently digging on Woldgate — “an unspoilt country lane,” according to the BBC — to install a new gas pipe for the town. Mr. Hockney, who has drawn, filmed and photographed the road extensively in recent years, has taken his case to the gas company to ask that they leave specific areas along the road undisturbed, among them “a tree stump and a bluebell wood.” His Woldgate works will be featured prominently at an upcoming show at the Royal Academy in London next year.
At a press conference for the show last week, the artist described the route as “a lovely little bit of England that is not spoiled”.
His efforts appear to have been successful. A spokesman for the gas company said he was “gobsmacked” to be invited to Mr. Hockney’s home and studio and found him to be “a plain-speaking Yorkshireman.”
“We’re happy to work with Mr Hockney and the other local people,” the spokesman told the BBC. “So far the feedback has been very good.”