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Wyeth was part of an artistic family. His father, N.C. Wyeth, was a notable artist and illustrator. Andrew learned art from his father and grew up with a love and appreciation for nature and his rural surroundings. His sisters, Henriette and Carolyn were also artists, as is his son, Jamie Wyeth.
Wyeth maintained his realistic painting style throughout his life. His paintings, mostly in watercolor and egg tempera, are characterized by their technical brilliance, stark images, subtle colors and recognizable subjects. The Olson Farm in Maine is the setting for his most famous painting, “Christina’s World”. “The Mill”, a group of 18th century buildings purchased by Wyeth, and the Kuerners and their farm in Pennsylvania appear often in his work. Helga Testorf, Karl Kuerner’s Prussian-born caretaker, is the subject of 247 paintings that Wyeth secretly painted between 1971-1985.
Despite the popular appeal of his paintings, his work has been criticized for being stagnant and more like illustration than art. Learn more about Andrew Wyeth and his art. There are two original paintings on display in art museums in the Milwaukee area; “Afternoon”, in the Milwaukee Art Museum and “Water Turtle”, in Marquette’s Haggerty Museum of Art. You can also find a number of Wyeth’s paintings included in the library’s online Art Museum Image Gallery. View high resolution images and get information about his work including title, date created, location, owner, dimensions and material and techniques used. The library also has a good collection of books available for checkout. The following are of special note:
American Vision: Three Generations of Wyeth Art: N.C.Wyeth, Andrew Wyeth, James Wyeth by James H. Duff
Andrew Wyeth: a Secret Life by Richard Meryman
Andrew Wyeth: Memory & Magic by Anne Classen Knutson
Andrew Wyeth: the Helga Pictures by John Wilmerding
Wyeth at Kuerner