Wednesday, February 22, 2006

ART GALLERY - Edward Hopper

Edward Hopper (American, 1882–1967), the best-known American realist of the inter-war period and one of my favourits. Hotel Lobby, 1943, oil on canvas 32 1/2 x 40 3/4 in. Indianapolis Museum of Art.

Three nameless guests and a desk clerk occupy the disquieting, airless space of Edward Hopper's Hotel Lobby. Urban loneliness and the banality of everyday existence are persistent themes in Hopper's paintings. The careful construction of the setting is also characteristic of the artist, who reinforced the strict geometry of his composition with the pattern of the rug and architectural elements.
The cheerlessness of the lobby is heightened by the harsh, raking light and the lack of rapport between the figures. Because of its elevated vantage point, the scene resembles a stage set. Hopper may have been inspired to paint from this point of view while he watched a play, since he frequently attended Broadway plays and preferred to view them from the balcony.



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