Edward Hopper: Greatest 20th Century Artist
Edward Hopper was an artist that worked in the 1900s, born in Nyack, New York. His parents were merchants and his family at large made a concerted effort to encourage his artistic abilities. Hopper studied at the New York School of Art, studying with certain greats of the art world like William Chase and Robert Henri (artic.edu, 2013). Hopper later travelled throughout Paris, visiting major metropolitan oases like Paris and London. Upon his return, Hopper worked as an illustrator for major advertising agencies and he tried fervently to get his work recognized (edwardhooper.net). Hopper gained his acclaim as a painter of modernism who has explored the ideas of tension: tension as it exists in society, both in urban and rural settings, along with tension as it can be evoked by various periods of the day (metmusuem.org).
Hopper's work is highly identifiable and that is one of the aspects which made it such a success. Hopper's style is incredibly mature and includes both urban and New England type settings, which all have a sense of loneliness and estrangement (metmuseum.org). As one critic noted, often Hopper's selected locations are absent of human activity and often suggest the fleeting quality inherent in modern life: there's an inherent sense of enigma which pervades through his work (metmusuem.org). Other critics have noted that even when...
It's also worth noting that these people often are rarely depicted in the places they live: instead they are depicted in public spaces like cafes or motel rooms, where they are forced to endure the burden of existing with a certain degree of loneliness among others (metmuseum.org). Part of the task of understanding Hopper as an artist involve understanding why people gravitated to his most famous painting, Nighthawks (1942). As the metmuseum states. "They appear lost in their own weariness and private concerns, their disconnection perhaps echoing the wartime anxiety felt by the nation as a whole" (Metmuseum.org). One can conclude that there is something special or particular about Hopper's presentation of loneliness and the manner in which he marries it to the human condition which resonates so strongly with the spectator, year after year.
The Art Processes
For Hopper, much of his process was connected to geometry. Hopper's technique is noticeably devoid of the showy or ostentatious demonstrations that typical artists engage in. Hopper places accuracy as a primal goal in order to infuse the scene with a certain amount of realism, so that the work could be as in touch with the human experience and the human condition as possible.
Hopper often focused his work on painting people and places in utter solitude and isolation. So much of his work has been marked with the word…
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