Thursday, May 03, 2007

Hopper at the MFA

The Edward Hopper retrospective show opens to the general public on Saturday, May 5th at the Museum of Fine Arts . It should be a big crowd pleaser . His work is now in vogue and it has a nice mix of realism and a modern approach with intense psychological implications. He touches on the existential loneliness that many of us city dwellers are all too familiar with. Furthermore much is left open for interpretation allowing us the viewers to be full participants in the creative process.

The downside is that the subject matter is rather limited. There are so many Maine lighthouses and New England wood frame houses that appreciating the subtle nuances that makes each one an important, unique statement, can grow wearisome. His oils of urban buildings were often lost on me. It was getting harder to focus by that point.

His studies of urban women including The Automat were a welcome change. The very next room had Nighthawks, New York Movie, and a third oil of a man and woman in an ambiguous office setting. Just great! The final room had his later work which seemed quite innovative. The label on the wall seemed to imply that he was running out of ideas in his later years. On the contrary, I found his later work to be full of lots of exciting departures from what he had done before.


At September 01, 2007, Blogger histfan said...

The Hopper exhibition got strong positive reviews in Time Magazine, Newsweek, The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, etc. Yet the exhibition did not come even close to attendence records of some previous shows. Perhaps the charge for special exhibitions is just too high.


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