Nighthawks is a 1942 oil on canvas painting by Edward Hopper that portrays people in a downtown diner late at night as viewed through the diner's large glass window. The light coming from the diner illuminates a darkened and deserted urban streetscape.
^Ian Chilvers and Harold Osborne (Eds.), The Oxford Dictionary of ArtOxford University Press, 1997 (second edition), p. 273, ISBN0-19-860084-4 "The central theme of his work is the loneliness of city life, generally expressed through one or two figures in a spare setting - his best-known work, Nighthawks, has an unusually large 'cast' with four."
^The sale was recorded by Josephine Hopper as follows, in volume II, p. 95 of her and Edward's journal of his art: "May 13, '42: Chicago Art Institute - 3,000 + return of Compartment C in exchange as part payment. 1,000 - 1/3 = 2,000." See Deborah Lyons, Edward Hopper: A Journal of His Work. New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1997, p. 63.