On Wednesday, we focused on gaze and style in seminar class. In art, gaze is how the viewer sees the subject of a painting and it helps the viewer develop a relationship with the subject. A person’s style is their identity during the time period. In class we analyzed different paintings by Edward Hopper and in doing this, we tied together two important concepts in art, gaze and style, because Edward Hopper’s predominant style in his artwork is the different kinds of perspectives that he gives his viewers.
In New York Interior, the subject of the painting is a woman who is sewing. From the viewer’s perspective, her back is the only thing we can see and no relationship is developed between the viewer and the woman. In Night Shadows, the viewer has an aerial perspective of a man in a hurry, although, we can develop a relationship with this subject and relate with him because we have all been in a hurry before. In Hopper’s self-portrait, we get a rare view of a subject’s face, and there is less mystery behind what the subject is feeling because his eyes are directed towards us and convey several different meanings.
After looking at Hopper’s painting, it seems clear that he focuses on giving his viewer a different perspective in every painting. I also feel that in all the paintings I have looked at, there is a sense of loneliness. Either there is a person alone, or there are a group of people and then there is a person off to the wayside like in “Nighthawks.”