Though legendary realist painter Edward Hopper’s most famous work, Nighthawks, lives at the Art Institute of Chicago, he did spend most of his life right here in NYC. And now the Whitney Museum is sharing his love for the city as reflected in his masterpieces with the new exhibit “Edward Hopper’s New York,” on view through March 5, 2023.
The exhibit looks at Hopper’s life and work through his renditions of the city — from simple sketches and illustrations early in his career, to paintings later in life. It features both the Whitney’s already acquired Hopper works, as well as those on loan from other exhibitions, combining both the very iconic to the more under-the-radar but equally as acclaimed pieces.
Many of the exhibited works will be from the Museum’s newly acquired Sanborn Hopper Archive which includes “more than 300 letters and notes from Hopper to his family, friends, and colleagues; twenty-one notebooks in Hopper’s own hand; and ninety notebooks by Hopper’s wife, Josephine Nivison Hopper; as well as extensive archival material relating to Hopper’s artistic career and personal life, such as photographs, personal papers, and dealer records.”
Hopper lived in NYC from 1908 to 1967, and therefore saw much of its industrial growth and urban development. It was a time when skyscrapers were being constructed, along with elevated trains and other projects, which Hopper was slow to embrace — “I just never cared for the vertical,” he explained in 1956.
“This exhibition will be the first of its kind to focus on Hopper’s rich and sustained relationship with New York: how the city served as the subject, setting, and inspiration for so many of the artist’s most celebrated and persistently vexing pictures.”
You’ll be able to see well-known works like “Automat” (1927), “Early Sunday Morning” (1930), “Room in New York” (1932), “New York Movie” (1939), and “Morning Sun” (1952), plus lesser-known pieces that nonetheless capture New York at a pivotal time, like “City Roofs” (1932).
Learn more about “Edward Hopper’s New York” on the Whitney website here.