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Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time

Oct 28, 2010–Apr 10, 2011

Edward Hopper 1882-1967, New York Interior,  ca. 1921. Oil on canvas, Overall: 24 1/4 × 29 1/4in. (61.6 × 74.3cm).  Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Josephine N. Hopper Bequest   70.1200. ©Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper, licensed by the Whitney Museum  of American Art. Photograph by Robert E. Mates

Edward Hopper 1882-1967, New York Interior, ca. 1921. Oil on canvas, Overall: 24 1/4 × 29 1/4in. (61.6 × 74.3cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Josephine N. Hopper Bequest 70.1200. ©Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper, licensed by the Whitney Museum of American Art. Photograph by Robert E. Mates

Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time traces the development of realism in American art between 1900 and 1940, emphasizing the diverse ways that artists depicted the sweeping transformations in urban and rural life that occurred during this period. The exhibition highlights the work of Edward Hopper, whose use of the subject matter of modern life to portray universal human experiences made him America’s most iconic realist painter of the 20th century. Drawn primarily from the Whitney Museum’s extensive holdings, Modern Life places Hopper’s achievements in the context of his contemporaries—the Ashcan School painters with whom he came of age as an artist in the century’s first decades, the 1920’s Precisionist artists, whose explorations of abstract architectural geometries mirrored those of Hopper, and a younger generation of American Scene painters, who worked alongside Hopper in New York during the 1930s. Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time includes approximately 80 works in a range of media by Hopper and artists such as John Sloan, Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Paul Strand, Charles Demuth, Guy Pène du Bois, Charles Sheeler, Charles Burchfield, Ben Shahn, Reginald Marsh. The show is accompanied by a 250-page illustrated catalogue with essays by American and German scholars, produced in conjunction with an exhibition of the same title which appeared at the Bucerius Kunst Forum, Hamburg, and the Kunsthal Rotterdam in 2009-10.

Modern Life: Edward Hopper and His Time is organized by Barbara Haskell and Sasha Nicholas.

Generous support is provided by

Additional support is provided by The Cowles Charitable Trust and The Gage Fund.

Media Partners WNET.ORG and New York magazine

Works from the Exhibition

Edward Hopper 1882-1967, South Carolina Morning, 1955. Oil on canvas, 30 9/16 × 40 1/4 in.  (77.63 x  102.24 cm)  Frame 38 1/8 × 48 1/8 in. Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Given in memory of Otto L. Spaeth by his Family  67.13 © Whitney Museum of American Art, NY.
Edward Hopper 1882-1967, Soir Bleu, 1914. Oil on canvas, Overall: 36 × 72in. (91.4 × 182.9cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Josephine N. Hopper Bequest  70.1208. ©Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper, licensed by the Whitney Museum of American Art. Photograph by Sheldan C. Collins
Charles Demuth 1883-1935, My Egypt, 1927. Oil and graphite pencil on fiberboard, 35 3/4 × 30 in.  (90.81 x  76.2 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Purchase, with funds from Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney  31.172.
Everett Shinn 1876-1953, Revue, 1908. Oil on canvas, 18 × 24 in.  (45.72 x  60.96 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Gift of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney  31.346. Photograph by Geoffrey Clements
Edward Hopper 1882-1967, Seven A. M., 1948. Oil on canvas, 30 3/16 × 40 1/8 in.  (76.68 x  101.92 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Purchase and exchange  50.8. © Whitney Museum of American Art. Photograph by Steven Sloman
Edward Hopper 1882-1967, Self Portrait, 1925-1930. Oil on canvas, 25 1/4 × 20 5/8 in.  (64.14 x  52.39 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Josephine N. Hopper Bequest  70.1165. © Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper, licensed by the Whitney Museum of American Art. Photograph by Robert E. Mates
Edward Hopper 1882-1967, New York Interior, ca. 1921. Oil on canvas, Overall: 24 1/4 × 29 1/4in. (61.6 × 74.3cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Josephine N. Hopper Bequest  70.1200. ©Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper, licensed by the Whitney Museum of American Art. Photograph by Robert E. Mates
Paul Strand 1890-1976,  Wall Street, New York, (1915, printed 1976-77). Platinum palladium print, Sheet: 11 × 13 7/8in. (27.9 × 35.2cm)  Image: 10 1/8 × 12 11/16in. (25.7 × 32.2cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Gift of Michael E. Hoffman in honor of Sondra Gilman  91.102.2. Photograph by Sheldan C. Collins

http://shop.whitney.org/books/exhibition-catalogues.html

This catalogue was produced in conjunction with the Edward Hopper and his Time exhibition on view at Bucerius Kunst Forum in Hamburg Germany. The show contains eight works by Hopper and 65 additional works by other artists, all from the Whitney Museum's collection.

This catalogue is no longer available at the Museum shop.

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In the News

Video: Curator Barbara Haskell walks through the exhibition
--WNET/Thirteen Sunday Arts

Review: "The Whitney's Good Friend is Joined by Some of His"
--The New York Times

Review: "It relieves Hopper from his 'lonely,' iconic status, clarifying his indebtedness to his time and honing our understanding of his originality."
--The Boston Globe

Review: "a suberb, intelligent exhibition, intimating the extent to which Hopper was both of his time and spectacularly beyond it."
--The Financial Times

Review: "curator Barbara Haskell and assistant Sasha Nicholas have done a service for Hopper's many fans by showing his work within the broader artistic community of his era."
--USA Today

Review: "The show gives us the unlikely experience of seeing Hopper the great loner in the context of his friends."
--The New York Observer

Video: Steve Martin discusses Hopper and walks through the exhibition as part of profile of Martin's career
--CBS Sunday Morning

"In Early Sunday Morning (1930) we look out rather than in, but the piercing loneliness is just as palpable."
--The New York Times, Ken Johnson's favorite paintings in New York

"Hopper is both a dreamer and a dream-slayer; he stills fashion, hope, solace, and conviction. He did that in his era; he can do it now."
--New York

An interview with exhibition co-curator Sasha Nicolas
--amNY

"Must See Arts in the City"
--WNYC Culture Blog