We finally made it to the Hopper and Homer shows at the Art Institute of Chicago a few weeks ago, after a couple of failed attempts. There are constantly lines out the door to see these exhibits!
And they are totally worth it. Some art can be appreciated pretty well in reproduction and some art is a revelation in person. I would never have thought seeing Hopper's stuff in person would be so amazing, but that's because the reproductions capture his achievement so poorly. In reproduction, I had loved Hopper's work, but for what I felt as loneliness and alienation portrayed there. I never had a clue about what he achieved with light.
In person, the light is almost all you see. The paintings seem to contain their own light, and even the most familiar (like Nighthawks at the Diner) are much brighter than you remember them. This was a phenomenal exhibit, and the Homer exhibit was a beautiful complement to it, for of course Homer, too, is all about light, though his effects show more clearly in reproduction.
Very beautiful work. So happy and proud to have the opportunity to see these exhibits here in Chicago.