19.7.11

Artist couples: Josephine Nivison & Edward Hopper _ A Few Scattered Notes & Quotes

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Edward Hopper, Reclining Nude, oil on canvas (1924)



Hopper turned forty-one in July; Nivison was just forty. In appearance and personality two people could hardly have been more different. She was not quite five feet one inch tall and weighed about a hundred pounds, while he stood nearly six feet fives inches and was as skinny as ever. Years later Nivison, who was often described as “lively, vivacious,” and “cute,” realled that “no one had ever called him either handsome or distinguished when I married him. It was the long, lean and hungry that got me”. (…)



She was gregarious, outgoing, sociable and talkative, while he was shy, quiet, solitary and introspective. (…)


They soon discovered their shared passion for French (…) Hopper years later reminisced about the happy days when they got together over Verlaine, Verhaeren [Les Heurs claires (1896), Les Heurs d’après-midi (1905), Les Heurs du soir (1911)] etc, etc, etc. An aspect of Verhaeren that parallel the future direction of Hopper’s art was described by Amy Lowell: “Verhaeren is no mere descriptive poet. Neither is he a surface realist. His realism contains the psychologic as well physiologic.”Even the titles with their focus on the qualities of times of day, parallel similar themes and conceptions already emergent in Hopper’s work.




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Edward Hopper designed and painted a Christmas card for Josephine Nivison and he copied the last stanza of  Paul Verlaine, poem, "La Lune Blanche."

La lune blanche

luit dans les bois.

De chaque branche

part une voix

sous la ramée.

O bien aimé[e]....



L'étang reflète,

profond miroir,

la silhouette

du saule noir

où le vent pleure.

Rêvons, c'est l'heure.



Un vaste et tendre

apaisement

semble descendre

du firmament

que l'astre irise.

C'est l'heure exquise!

Paul Verlaine

"French remained the language of romantic imagination for Edward and Jo all their lives, although their travels in search of new subjects would take them over further south and west in the new world and never back to Paris."

Gail Levin, Edward Hopper: An intimate Biography, "First Success:1923-1924," (Los Angeles, University of California Press, 1998) pp. 168 and 173.



An interesting article on Edward and Josephine: 


From here

1 comentário:

MC disse...

Un vaste et tendre
apaisement
semble descendre
du firmament
que l'astre irise.

C'est l'heure exquise!

Etonnant, je me suis servie de ces mots là , justement aujourd'hui pour écrire à ma fille ... Il n'y a pas de hasard ...

Mon anglais n'est hélas pas fameux mais il ne m'empêche pas tous tes d'apprécier tous tes articles. J'aime beaucoup ce que je trouve dans ton univers.
A bientôt Hélèna !