Bob Dylan: a Hockney-like painter of America's strange essence

By Jonathan Jones

Dylan's art marks him out as a staunch traditionalist – but his powers of observation make his canvases evocative celebrations of life itself

Long before Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel prize in literature, pundits used to talk about “Dylan versus Keats”, as if you had to choose, and as if Dylan's poetic transformations of folk song are really so different from what John Keats does in his eerie ballad La Belle Dame sans Merci.

When it comes to Dylan's art, the dice fall differently. Dylan versus John Constable would make no sense, for when it comes to drawing and painting it's as plain as a Brooklyn ice cream parlour that Bob Dylan is a bluff old traditionalist.

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Source: Bob Dylan: a Hockney-like painter of America's strange essence