David Hockney, “Pearblossom Hwy. 11- 18th April 1986, #2″, Chromogenic Print, J. Paul Getty Museum
“Pearblossom Highway (the painting) shows a crossroads in a very wide open space, which you only get a sense of in the western United States… . [The] picture was not just about a crossroads, but about us driving around. I’d had three days of driving and being the passenger. The driver and the passenger see the road in different ways. When you drive you read all the road signs, but when you’re the passenger, you don’t, you can decide to look where you want. And the picture dealt with that: on the right-hand side of the road it’s as if you’re the driver, reading traffic signs to tell you what to do and so on, and on the left-hand side it’s as if you’re a passenger going along the road more slowly, looking all around. So the picture is about driving without the car being in it.” – David Hockney
Thus David Hockney described the circumstances leading to the creation of this photocollage of the scenic Pearblossom Highway north of Los Angeles. His detailed collage reveals the more mundane observations of a road trip. The littered cans and bottles and the meandering line where the pavement ends and the sand begins point to the interruption of the desert landscape by the roads cutting through it and the imprint of careless travelers.