American Landscape (1920) by Edward Hopper

American Landscape - Edward Hopper - 1920

Artwork Information

TitleAmerican Landscape
ArtistEdward Hopper
Date1920
Mediumetching
Dimensions31.1 x 18.4 cm
Art MovementNew Realism
Current LocationButler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, OH, US
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About American Landscape

“American Landscape” is an etching by Edward Hopper created in 1920. This artwork embodies the New Realism art movement and is characterized as a landscape genre. The etching measures 31.1 by 18.4 centimeters and is part of the collection at the Butler Institute of American Art located in Youngstown, Ohio, United States.

The artwork depicts a tranquil and desolate rural scene. It features a solitary house positioned towards the right half of the composition, with its sharp, defined lines rendering a sturdy, almost austere presence. The house is flanked by leafless trees that contribute to the scene’s stark and subdued atmosphere. In the foreground, one notes the presence of grazing cattle, their forms etched in a confident and realistic manner. The careful delineation of the cattle’s bodies contrasts with the swirling, expressive marks that represent the grassy field they inhabit, creating a texture-rich foreground that draws the viewer’s eye.

One discerns a relatively low horizon line, which allows for an expansive view of the sky, although in this etching, the sky is not detailed, leaving an open space that draws attention back to the finely sketched subjects below. Edward Hopper’s precise use of line and his inclination to highlight isolation and the mundane aspects of American life are evident in this work, resonating with the themes often found in his larger body of work. The etching technique has enabled Hopper to achieve varying degrees of shading and texture, from the dense darkness of the treeline to the lighter, more delicate rendering of the house and sky. Overall, “American Landscape” captures a slice of American rural life with a meditative and introspective quality characteristic of Hopper’s oeuvre.

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