Edward Hopper (1882-1967)
Edward Hopper grew up and lived in the inter-war period. He grew up in a well-off middle class family and decided he was going to be an artist as early as 16 years old (Smith, 1986). His parents supported him however pushed him towards commercial art because it had more promise and structure. He first attended the New York School of Illustrating but later transferred to the New York School of Art in 1900. At this school he worked under artists who influenced him to become the artist he is known as today. In 1906 he travelled to Paris like many other young artists. He visited Paris on three separate occasions within the next 4 years in search for inspiration and ideas. Edward Hopper was clearly born a talented artist, however without the help of certain people and things, he would not have been the artist we know him as today. At the New York School of Art, Edward was trained and educated by people such as William Merritt Chase, and Robert Henri who was one of the fathers of American Realism. Hopper pointed out that Chase didn’t teach him much but described Henri as being the most influential teacher he ever had. Along with his teachers, Hopper trained himself by travelling to various different places such as Paris, London, Amsterdam, Berlin, and Brussels. Urban and rural scenes were usually the places Edward Hopper would work in or use in his work. Urban architecture and cityscapes were major subjects for him. He was fascinated with what he called our architecture’s “hideous beauty.” He was known for his accuracy, and finely calculated art work because it reflected his personal vision of modern American life. Urban and rural scenes were good places to paint and draw because they accurately displayed what the modern world is in his opinion. He was best known as an American realist painter and printmaker. Hopper was a realist artist because his teacher, Robert Henri, influenced and shared his passion of realism with him. He was...
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