Hopper House Art Center
Hopper House is a community cultural center and a gallery
space for artists. The ground floor is a vibrant
and exciting gallery space that features monthly exhibits.
In addition to a busy gallery schedule, there are life
drawing lessons, lectures, and musical presentations
- all made possible by an active and devoted membership.
From the porch of the two-story clapboard
house on North Broadway, you have a clear view down
the slope of Second Avenue to the bank of the Hudson
River and the opposite shore. It was this view that
the young Edward Hopper saw every day from his upstairs
window when he was growing up in the late 1800's.
The house was built in 1858 by the
Edward's maternal grandfather. Edward's father, Garret
Hopper, moved into the house after marrying the owner's
daughter, Elizabeth, in 1878. Edward and his sister
Marion were born in the house - he in 1882 and she in
1880. Marion lived in the house, unmarried, until her
death in 1965. Although Edward left Nyack early in his
life, he held title to the house until he died. Thus
the house was home to three generations of one family,
and no other family has owned it.
The character of Nyack has changed
since Edward Hopper was a boy. Approximately half of
the business blocks were built in the first decade of
Edward's life, and many of the houses are still standing.
From the time of the Civil War until
1893, Nyack was a fast growing center of transportation
and manufacturing. Nyack was both a rail terminal, with
30 passenger trains a day, and a port for steamboats
and a cross-Hudson ferry. The town boasted three shipyards;
six shoe factories, four cigar factories, a church organ
factory and a piano factory three stories high. After
the financial panic of 1893 and a brief but harsh depression,
growth came to a halt and many factories closed permanently.
Nyack survived as a picturesque river town.
The young Hopper was greatly influenced
by the one industry that continued well into the 20th
century--boat building. After school, he spent many
hours around the docks at the foot of Main Street and
at a boat yard a few blocks north of Hopper House where
Gedney Street joins Ackerman Place.
Edward built one boat to prove he
could do it and thought seriously of becoming a marine
architect. Some of his earliest drawings were of boating
on the Hudson River. His love of boats and the water
was reflected in his paintings and watercolors throughout
Edward Hopper graduated from Nyack
High School in 1899 and started commuting to art classes
in New York City. He also taught art classes at the
house in Nyack on Saturdays. After three trips to Paris
from 1906 to 1910, he moved to a room on East 59th Street
in New York City -- never to call Nyack his home again.
In 1913 he moved to an apartment and studio, Number
3 Washington Square North, where he lived until he died.
In 1924 he married artist Josephine Nivison, who committed
her life to his career and served as a model for many
of his paintings. They did not have any children.
Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday - 1 to 5pm, Monday
- Wednesday: Closed.