- This event has passed.
Palazzo Fava explores the world of Edward Hopper, the storyteller
25 March, 2016
“If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint.” Edward Hopper
Some call him a storyteller, while others consider him the only artist who could capture the very instant – crystallized in time – of a scene, or the essence of a person. After all, it was Edward Hopper himself (1882-1967) – the best-known and most popular American artist of the 20th century, a man of few words, a retiring personality who loved the ocean and the horizon, and the clear light in his large studio.
The exhibition opening on 25 March and running until 3 July 2016 at Palazzo Fava – Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Bologna has been jointly organized by the Fondazione Carisbo, Genus Bononiae. Musei nella Città and the Arthemisia Group, with the collaboration with the Municipality of Bologna and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.
It offers an chronological overview of Edward Hopper’s entire output, from his Parisian watercolours to his landscapes and cityscapes from the ‘50s and ‘60s, with over 60 artworks on display, including celebrated masterpieces such as South Carolina Morning (1955), Second Story Sunlight (1960), New York Interior (1921), Le Bistro or The Wine Shop (1909), and Summer Interior (1909), as well as fascinating studies (like his 1941 study for Girlie Show) that are testaments to Hopper’s superb draughtsmanship.
The selection spans his entire career and touches on all the techniques used by an artist who is now considered a classic twentieth-century painter. An outstanding loan is the large painting entitled Soir Bleu (has a length of about two meters), symbol of loneliness and human alienation, made by Hopper in 1914 in Paris. This major retrospective is curated by Barbara Haskell – curator of painting and sculpture for the Whitney Museum of American Art – with the collaboration of Luca Beatrice.
The Whitney has devoted a number of exhibitions to Hopper, starting with the 1920 show at the Whitney Studio Club and including memorable exhibitions in 1950, 1964 and 1980. And since 1968, when Hopper’s widow, Josephine, bequeathed their collection to the Whitney, the museum has housed the bulk of Hopper’s works, over 3,000 paintings, drawings and prints.
Divided chronologically into six thematic sections, the exhibition retraces Hopper’s career, from his academic training as a student in Paris to his much better-known “classical” period in the ’30s, ‘40s and 50s, and on to his intensely iconic works in his later years. All the artist’s favourite techniques are covered by the show: oil painting, watercolours and prints, with a special focus on the intriguing connection between his paintings and the studies he drew for them, an essential part of Hopper’s output.