Edward Hopper resided in the Washington Square area of New York City from 1905 until his death in 1967, pursuing the visual essence of Gotham in various media and taking the measure of ordinary city dwellers. He embraced the architecture of the great city, revealing its solidity and bulk in "convincing three dimensional pictorial space." Today his most evocative canvases resonate with a contemporary power. Whether in oils and watercolors such as Automat, Nighthawks, or New York Pavements or in etchings like The El Station and Night Shadows, Hopper gave us stark yet intimate interpretation of urban existence that are touchstones of American art.
Avis Berman's essay explores how Hopper and his work illuminate each other by analyzing what his New York is--and is not. The artist preferred nondescript vernacular buildings, eschewing the new, the gigantic, the technologically exciting. He truly made emptiness full, silence articulate, plainness mysterious, and tawdriness noble. Hardcover. 112 pages. Pomegranate Communications, 2005.
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