Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism. Become a member today »

Edward Hopper, “Nighthawks” (1942) (via Wikipedia)

There are many mysteries in 20th C. American art but none are more enduring than the question of the location of that mysterious diner in Edward Hopper’s iconic painting “Nighthawks” (1942). Now, Jeremiah Moss of the blog Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York is promising to get to the bottom of it all.

In part one, Moss looks into suggestions that “the triangular plot of land that juts like a shark fin between 7th Avenue South, Perry Street, and Greenwich … also known as Mulry Square” was the site.

He provides some evidence in favor of the theory:

In Hopper expert Gail Levin’s book Hoppers Places and her Hopper biography, she writes that the painter himself claimed that Nighthawks was “suggested by a restaurant on Greenwich Avenue where two streets meet.” Those streets, adds Levin, were “Eleventh Street and Seventh Avenue.” She goes on to say that the diner “was surely on the empty rectangular lot” in that spot.

Tour guides, news stories, and blogs all refer to the MTA’s lot as the singular birthplace of Nighthawks. It is accepted Village folklore.

I won’t spoil

Support Hyperallergic

As arts communities around the world experience a time of challenge and change, accessible, independent reporting on these developments is more important than ever. 

Please consider supporting our journalism, and help keep our independent reporting free and accessible to all.

Become a Member

Hrag Vartanian

Hrag Vartanian is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic. You can follow him at @hragv.

One reply on “Searching for Hopper’s “Nighthawks” Diner”