Edward Hopper (July 22, 1882 - May 15, 1967) is regarded as one of the most seminal modern American artists of the 20th century. While Hopper was most famous for his oil paintings, he was also proficient to be a watercolorist as well as printmaker in etching.
Edward Hopper was born into a comfortable middle-class and very Baptist family in Nyack, N.Y, in 1882. Though as an adult he abandoned organized religion, the artist clung emotionally and intellectually to his puritan upbringing - a fact revealed in his austere paintings whose human figures only rarely display emotion and often seem frozen into moments of isolation amid others, even when others are standing beside them.
He made three trips to France during the five-year period prior to 1910, during which he admired and was influenced by the works of Edouard Manet and Edgar Degas. He acquired a lifelong attachment to the pensive, moody poems of Paul Verlaine, many of which he could recite from memory. Indeed, Hopper's figures often look like they've been quoting Verlaine to themselves.
Revealing too was Hopper's favorite quote from the German poet Goethe's "Wanderer's Nightsong" - "Peace, quiet; no birds sing. Someday you will be quiet, too."
Important collectors such as Washington's Duncan Phillips began collecting his works in the mid-1920s. In 1930, the Museum of Modern Art accepted Hopper's "House by the Railroad" as a gift from a donor - the first painting by an American artist to enter the museum's permanent collection.
His fame was such that it survived the onslaught of nonrepresentational art - Abstract Expressionism - that seized the art world in the 1940s. Hopper himself penned a potent criticism of abstraction (and a defense of representational art like his own) in a letter to a friend in 1947: "Whether we wish it or not we are all bound to the earth with our experience of life and the reactions of the mind, heart, and eye, and our sensations by no means consist entirely of form, color, and design."
Hoppers most popular oil painting reproductions including: