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American Realism

American Realism

American artistic movement that developed in the first two decades of the 20th century. It emerged in response to the profound social and urban change occurring in major cities. It influenced painting, literature, journalism, and music. The pictorial part was driven by a group of painters (Ashcan School) based in New York, the city where they found their main source of inspiration.


  • "Hotel Room" -

The style seeks to capture new realities of life, work, and leisure of people now turned into urbanites, often depicting themes such as: urban landscapes, offices, hotels, rural scenes with modern elements, and technological advances.


Works by Edward Hopper that exemplify these themes:


  • "Office at Night"

  • "Hotel Lobby"

  • "The Automat"

In this way, it might seem that the style is merely a descriptive pictorial form, however, this variant of realism goes much further, one of its fundamental characteristics is the theme is imbued with a strong aura of melancholy, nostalgia, and loneliness, in this sense it represents a critical social outlook, as if asking Are the advances worth this price?


  • "Two on the Aisle" -

As for the technique, American realism features a clean brushstroke, adhering to classical canons of depth and volume. The colors are realistic, usually in the works a range of natural tones (earthy and greens) are mixed with synthetic colors characteristic of modern life: strong and/or metallic colors.


  • "Gas"

The painters who cultivated the style seem to spontaneously agree on common elements of theme and feeling. In turn, each one delivered their personal vision of the city. Some artists recall the shapes and colors of Expressionism, others approach the finer specimens of French Impressionism.


  • "Dempsey and Firpo" - George Bellows

  • "The White Ballet" - Everett Shinn

  • "Allen Street" - George B. Luks

  • "McSorley's Bar" - John French Sloan

  • "Snow in New York" - Robert Henri

  • "East River Park" - William Glackens

Paintings of American Realism have already become a part of the culture and history of American art, they are a fundamental part to understand later artistic movements such as Regionalism, Pop Art, and contemporary art.


Available in the store:

8 products

Automat, Hopper
Automat £134.00 GBP
Chop Suey, Hopper
Chop Suey £134.00 GBP
The Long Leg, Hopper
The Long Leg £134.00 GBP
Gas, Hopper
Gas £134.00 GBP
Nighthawks, Hopper
Nighthawks £224.00 GBP
Rooms by the Sea, Hopper
Rooms by the Sea £134.00 GBP
New York, New Haven and Hartford, Hopper
Custom paintings