Grand Union

Ralph Fasanella (American, 1914–1997)
1955
MediumOil on canvas
Dimensions50 × 72 inches
CreditGift of Mrs. Eve Fasanella, 2005
Accession Number2005.01

Figures highlight the principle parts of Ralph Fasanella’s landscape, enlivening the parking lot, the supermarket, the tunnels and pathways, and the neighborhood streets with everyday activities. The Grand Union supermarket, seen at the center of Fasanella’s painting, draws the eye in with its sleek modernity: smooth geometries and well-lit glass front.

Fasanella, who started painting only in his mid-30s, paints an imaginative but nonetheless logical landscape where real landmarks mix with intuitive but clearly demarcated geographical features. Notice how his train tracks separate not just space but also time: the 19th-century forms of warehouses, older storefronts, churches, and the train station in the background and the modern supermarket with its auto-filled parking lot front and center.

A recent conservation cleaning has uncovered the original vibrancy of Fasanella’s color palette.

Exhibition History