Showing posts from October, 2012

Truro Hopper Medley

Many people have contacted me to say they've enjoyed seeing the photos my wife and I took in this fall when we were staying up in Hopper's S. Truro, MA studio. And asked that they keep coming. Here goes... Above is the Hopper studio (at left) seen from about 3/4 of the way down the path that leads from the studio to the beach where Hopper used to like to swim (often alone, to the chagrin of his wife Jo). The large house to the right lies just to the south of the studio. It was built in the decades after the Hoppers died. I invite viewers to imagine how these hills looked in Hopper's time, when his was the only building on this long stretch of high dunes.  For fun and to give some context to these photos of the studio I'm putting in a couple of  Cape Cod theme Hopper paintings. One that I've always loved even though its mood seems a little unsettling is Hopper's Cape Cod Evening.  The dog is placed right up front as the most important "actor.&quo

Is Edward Hopper Turing Over in His Grave?

Yes probably. I suspect he might prefer his notorious desire to be left alone be extended posthumously to his studio. A number of people who had direct encounters with Hopper later in his life have told me he could be remote or even rude. Well, that at least makes him more real. Often he could paint like an angel. What he lacked in charm with strangers he made up for with the amazing generosity of his eye. So many people who love Hopper have thanked me for sharing the photos my wife Alice and I took during our last residency in the famous painter's S. Truro, MA studio in late September and early October. I feel I'm performing something of a public service. To get me to stop they'll have to send the art police. Here I am above sitting in the bedroom in Hopper's studio. The two windows behind me overlook Cape Cod Bay. The bench I'm using is the same one pictured in Arnold Newman's famous 1960 portrait of Hopper sitting outdoors on the n

Hopper Studio Fall '12 Part 3

Here are some of the new photos of the S. Truro, MA Hopper studio that have been posted to the special Hopper Studio Photos page of my website . The page will be getting additions regularly over the next period as we have a lot  of great new photos to download. I believe it is the largest group of original photos of the Hopper studio to be found anywhere and can serve as a resource for Hopper scholars and Hopper lovers. Above is a view through the open kitchen door- this is the entryway the Hoppers used to get to their car and the outside world. This is the southeast corner of the studio, with the far window opening onto their small bedroom. Usually there is  quite a breeze blowing in off Cape Cod Bay as the studio is at the crest of a steep hill. The present owner of the studio had a partly sheltered set of steps with waist high walls added a few years ago as a buffer against the elements. This is standing in the painting room looking due south, toward the firepla

A Discovery About The Cleveland Museum of Art's Edward Hopper

Aha!  In this oil Hopper painted the very spot where he would build his famous studio on Cape Cod. It's a sort of painted love letter to where he and his wife Jo would spend half of each year for the last three decades of their lives.  The painting is   Hills, South Truro  from 1930 that's in the Collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art (the first art museum with a truly world class collection that I visited regularly once I'd discovered it as a budding art major at Oberlin College back in the late '60's).  Earlier this month when I was sitting in Edward Hopper's studio on Cape Cod I took a break from the paintings I was doing and absentmindedly began flipping through a book of plates of Hopper's work. As Hills, South Truro  came into view it hit me that I was literally sitting right in the middle that painting. I've always thought it one of Hopper's masterpieces, and the one that comes closest to capturing the slightly other-wo

Hopper Studio 2012 Residency Part 2

Many people find the paintings of Edward Hopper hauntingly attractive. Naturally there's enormous curiosity about Edward Hopper and where he worked. Here are some photos my wife and I took while up at the South Truro studio last week.  Hopper designed the place himself and had it built in 1934 (using fund his wife Jo inherited).  I'll be showing more of these new photos over the next few blog posts. Above is the studio last week first thing in the morning with the just-risen sun blasting on its east wall. This is the north end of the studio with its signature 10' tall north window. The painting room of the studio is big and fills the entire north half of the building. On the exterior wall that's in the sunlight, the two smaller windows on the right open onto the painting room. Here's the inside of the painting room again showing the first rays of sun hitting the far wall. That's Cape Cod Bay in the distance. The dutch door at the left was th

My 14th Residency in Edward Hopper's Cape Cod Studio

I'm just returned from Hopper's studio in South Truro on Cape Cod. With the exception of one sunny day we had terrible weather but on the whole enjoyed a stellar time. For an artist like myself I can't imagine a greater honor than to stay in this studio that is just dripping with art history. Hopper's paintings speak to a lot of people. Hopper combined a remarkable openness to his surroundings with an almost maniacally rigorous selectivity. To put it another way, he saw more than most and chose only a tiny percentage of his perceptions as material good enough to make his art. For example this photo of the spot where Hopper spent half of each year for three decades might look to many artists like a perfect source to do sweeping deep spaced beach panoramas. But instead Hopper's imagination was usually more stirred by interior spaces, architecture, and a human presence.  The above photo was taken last week standing about 1/3 of the way down the path Hopper