Tom Hopkins was a Canadian painter and printmaker born in Summerside, Prince Edward Island, in 1944. He studied at Mount Allison University and earned a master’s degree at Concordia University in 1987, where he taught from 1983 to 1997. He also taught at McGill University and gave numerous workshops across Canada and the United States. In 1991, a retrospective of his work, titled Narration of Icon, was organized by curator David G. Burnett and presented at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. Hopkins’s work is included in numerous prominent collections in Canada, including the Collection Prêt d’oeuvres d’art du Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec. He died on January 23, 2011, in Montreal.
Viajero (“traveller” in English) takes over from the caballeros desconocidos, or “unknown knights,” painted by Hopkins the same year. Each of these works depicts a similar versicoloured, nocturnal setting: an imaginative vision of the city in which dizzyingly high walkways contrast with the Old World, with its stone landings and ancient trees. In Viajero—High Moon, the sky is flooded with an auroral light that is reflected in the water below; in the backlit foreground, a lone figure in silhouette turns to face the rising sun. As a whole, the painting is imbued with cool, textured, sophisticated colours that add richness and mystery to the work.