Train and Bathers (1918) by Edward Hopper

Train and Bathers - Edward Hopper - 1918

Artwork Information

TitleTrain and Bathers
ArtistEdward Hopper
Art MovementNew Realism
Current LocationWhitney Museum of American Art, New York City, NY, US

About Train and Bathers

“Train and Bathers” is an etching by Edward Hopper completed in 1918. This work, which falls within the genre painting category, encapsulates the New Realism movement. It is a piece of the collection at the Whitney Museum of American Art, located in New York City, NY, US.

The artwork depicts a juxtaposition of industrial and leisurely life, with a steam locomotive chugging in the background and figures of bathers in the foreground. The train, detailed with billowing smoke, dominates the right side of the composition, capturing the vigor of early 20th-century mechanization. It travels on an elevated track, suggesting the significance of rail travel during this era.

In contrast, on the left side, we observe bathers immersed in what appears to be a serene moment, oblivious to or undisturbed by the nearby industrial activity. The figures are rendered with a sense of immediacy and intimacy, highlighting the contrast between the mechanical and the natural, the bustling and the tranquil. This duality within a single scene is a hallmark of Hopper’s work, which often evokes a narrative through the careful placement of figures and elements within a space. The etching technique allows for a richness in textures, from the rough foliage to the soft water, further enhancing the contrast between the two realms depicted in the artwork.

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