Popular art history has remembered he twentieth century primarily as an era in which old standards of art were rejected in favour of modernism and postmodernism, where attempts to capture or idealise the real world were thrown out and all manner of subjectivity embraced. Such a view is in fact deeply reductionist, however. The truth is that realism was a thriving movement during the twentieth century, and produced a range of iconic artists whose influence can still be felt upon the art world today. A fine example of this is Edward Hopper, who - as a man who lived from 1882 to 1967 - was a witness to the extreme social changes of the twentieth century.
Born in New York, Edward Hopper played with a range of different subjects throughout his artistic career. Some of his canvasses depict domestic scenes, for example; he also works as an illustrator on propaganda posters during the First World War, a role that saw him daub inspiring images of American heroism. But one theme above all others shows through in his art: a distinct love of rural America. Hopper produced canvas after canvas depicting country scenes, from green-clad hills and pathways to quaint country houses perched atop verdant hills.
"Burly Cobbs House South Truro" is one of Hopper's paintings which depict rural architecture. Hopper has chosen an unusual perspective for this piece: the building is seen from atop a hill, so that most of the walls are obscured and the main focus is upon the roofs. It is, in essence, an almost abstract collection of geometric shapes, formed from slate tiles and chimneys. The colour tones of the surrounding countryside are distinctly autumnal, with sepia grass and a greying sky. The viewer can almost smell a true countryside aroma as it wafts past their face, while an autumnal breeze blows towards them.
Any lover of American art would appreciate having "Burly Cobbs House South Truro" on display in their home, acting as a window into a bygone America that will captivate the entire household.