Edward Hopper (1882-1967)

Landscape with Automobile (Study for 'Road and Trees')

1962
Charcoal on Paper
8 1/2 x 11 inches

Hopper loved to drive and the road, along with people on the move figured prominently as one of his motifs throughout his career. The paintings form a continuum, progressing from one to the next - particularly we think of Gas, 1940, Route 6, Eastham, 1941,
Solitude #56, 1944 and Four Lane Road, 1956. Road and Trees feels like it is just down the road from the station in Gas.

"Road and Trees" was Hopper’s fifth to last painting.. It seems probable that this drawing is an early idea for" Road and Trees", with the car as the traditional narrative element. He pares it down to an empty landscape. Ahead next year is Sun In An Empty Room which he said had been originally conceived with a figure which he eliminated because it was too big.

Edward Hopper died in 1967. When Jo Hopper died eight months later she left the entire contents of the New York Studio to the Whitney Museum and their Cape Cod home in Truro to her friend Mary Schiffenhaus. In the drawers and cupboards Mrs. Schiffenhaus found studies for many of Hoppers great late works. These drawings showcase an essential part of this hidden Hopper. They are not studies in the true sense, as Hopper, particularly in his later works, had essentially solved the structural and compositional issues of a new painting in his mind. They reflect the clarity of Hopper’s imagination and his vision of the final composition of some of his greatest paintings.


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