Gift of The Print Club of Cleveland 1975.52
© Heirs of Josephine N. Hopper / Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY
Catalogue raisonné: Levin pl. 80
To achieve the sharp contrasts in this image, Hopper not only deeply etched the copperplate but also selectively wiped the ink, leaving some sections, such as the upper border, slightly murky while wiping clean the area around the man.
While George Bellows cast the park at night as a place for lovers, Edward Hopper’s park is a respite for a solitary man reading a newspaper under lamplight. Hopper used an oblique view into space in this nocturnal setting, taking advantage of the strong contrasts of light and shadow created with deeply etched lines. The composition could suggest the kind of scene one might see in a film, but a specific narrative is elusive. Instead, Hopper may have intended to evoke a feeling, sense, or memory that could differ for each viewer.
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