description of Sunset Streets by Wayne Thiebaud

This four-foot-tall, three-foot-wide oil painting depicts a steep street running up a hill through a city. Though there are many buildings on either side of the main street, no people are visible. The main street, covered in black tarmac and thin lane markings, cuts straight up the center of the canvas, so steep that it appears almost vertical. On both sides of the street, tall buildings are lined up one behind the other, rendered in pastel oranges, blues and creams. A second street cuts across the main artery at another improbably steep angle, starting at our lower left and exiting the canvas half way up the right side. At the top of the painting, behind the last of the buildings, the setting abruptly switches to a pastoral landscape. Sloping green and brown fields fill the upper corners of the canvas, and the straight black city street becomes a tan, sunlit road that curves up between them.

Wayne Thiebaud, Sunset Streets, 1985
Wayne Thiebaud, Sunset Streets, 1985; oil on canvas, 48 in. x 35 3/4 in. (121.92 cm x 90.81 cm); Collection SFMOMA, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Purchase with the aid of funds from public subscription, William L. Gerstle Fund, Fund of the '80s, Clinton Walker Fund, and Thomas W. Weisel; © Wayne Thiebaud / Licensed by VAGA, New York
Wayne Thiebaud, Sunset Streets, 1985

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Sunset Streets
Artist name
Wayne Thiebaud
Date created
1985
Classification
painting
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
48 in. x 35 3/4 in. (121.92 cm x 90.81 cm)
Date acquired
1986
Credit
Collection SFMOMA
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Purchase with the aid of funds from public subscription, William L. Gerstle Fund, Fund of the '80s, Clinton Walker Fund, and Thomas W. Weisel
Copyright
© Wayne Thiebaud / Licensed by VAGA, New York
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/86.6
Artwork status
On view on floor 2 as part of Open Ended: Painting and Sculpture Since 1900

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