Photo by Peter Ralston, 2005

“One’s art goes as far and as deep as one’s love goes.” Andrew Wyeth

In his art, Wyeth's favorite subjects were the land and people around him, both in his hometown of Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, and at his summer home in Cushing, Maine. Wyeth often noted: "I paint my life."

One of the best-known images in 20th-century American art is his painting, Christina's World, currently in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. This tempera was painted in 1948 when Wyeth was 31 years old.

"The work of American painter Andrew Wyeth strikes at the very heart of human existence, engaging in our struggles, our personalities and our individual circumstances. His 1948 painting Christina’s World is easily his most recognized piece and shows his neighbor Christina Olson scrambling around on the grassy hills surrounding their homes (she was paralyzed from the waist down from polio). It is one of my favorite paintings from the 20th century, purely because of the sadness evoked in the scene and the title, once the viewer is aware of Christina’s situation. Wyeth often chose to depict subjects that he was personally connected to, a decision that was sometimes criticized for its safeness.

The Wyeth family produced 3 generations of artists beginning with Andrew’s father, the illustrator N.C. Wyeth, and leading to Andrew’s son Jamie, who followed in his father’s footsteps as a painter of realism. Jamie’s mother and Andrew’s lifelong wife Betsy James took the position of Andrew’s manager, as well as posing as the torso for Christina’s World." (

Andrew Newell Wyeth, youngest son of N.C. Wyeth, is the best known artist in the family. He has been recognized internationally as America's foremost realist. Andrew was particularly close to his father and began studying with him at an early age. He never attended school, although... (
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