Howard Hodgkin is one of the world's leading painters, whose art is admired both by critics and by a wide public. Beginning with a remembered experience, Hodgkin works on his seductive and complex paintings for long periods, characteristically producing richly coloured, sweeping compositions, which continue into the picture-frame itself. These paintings uniquely straddle representation and abstraction, at the same time as they demonstrate both an awareness of history and an understanding of art's potential today. Most recently, his interest in working in different scales, evident particularly in significantly larger paintings such as Americana and After Vuillard, demonstrates his concern to engage the viewer in new and challenging ways.
In this interview, illustrated with many key paintings, Howard Hodgkin speaks with warmth and passion about how his methods, about his influences, about colour and composition, and about the fundamental importance of painting. "You need things to look at," he says simply, "things to affect your feelings, and your intelligence, and your heart."