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What Makes Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks a Great Painting?: A Video Essay

openculture.com
 2021-07-26

Cover picture for the article“Even though you may live in one of the most crowded and busy cities on Earth, it is still possible to feel entirely alone.” Though hardly a novel sentiment, this nevertheless makes for a highly suitable entrée into a video essay on Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks. Its creator is gallerist and Youtuber James Payne, whose channel Great Art Explained has already taken on the likes of Leonardo’s Mona Lisa, Michelangelo’s David, Andy Warhol’s Marilyn Diptych, and Hieronymus Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights. Nighthawks, safe to say, makes a more immediate impression on us 21st-century urbanites than any of those works, whatever our individual degrees of alienation. But why?

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