Office at Night (1940) by Edward Hopper

Office at Night - Edward Hopper - 1940

Artwork Information

TitleOffice at Night
ArtistEdward Hopper
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions56.4 x 63.8 cm
Art MovementSocial Realism
Current LocationWalker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota

About Office at Night

“Office at Night” is a work of art by Edward Hopper, painted in 1940, and encapsulates the essence of Social Realism through its oil on canvas medium. Measuring 56.4 x 63.8 cm, this genre painting forms part of what is known as Hopper’s ‘Couple’ paintings series. Currently, the artwork is housed in the Walker Art Center located in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The artwork presents a late evening scene within an office setting, which is typical of Hopper’s exploration of modern American life and its psychological landscape. A man is depicted sitting at a large desk, intently focused on the papers before him, with the glow of a desk lamp casting a warm illumination across the work surface. He is formally dressed, suggesting professionalism or a late stay at the office. Across from him stands a woman, poised by a filing cabinet, whose attire and poise suggest she may be a secretary or a colleague. She appears simultaneously engaged in her task yet somehow disconnected from the man, emphasizing a sense of isolation within the shared space.

The room is filled with the trappings of a mid-twentieth-century office: a sturdy desk, typewriter, wooden chairs, and filing cabinets, all rendered with careful attention to detail and form. The positioning of the figures and the objects within the space creates a narrative tension, as if something has just happened or is about to occur. The window in the room opens us to the darkening sky outside, furthering the enigmatic atmosphere of the scene and reinforcing Hopper’s characteristic interplay between interior and exterior spaces.

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