A gift for those who love the art of Andrew Wyeth.

Andrew Wyeth passed away January 16 of this year. My Mom and Dad have one of his prints, "Her Room"(above), and I grew up looking at the painting many call "haunting." To me, it was serene and calming. I made up stories about it. It, along with "Master Bedroom" are two of my favorite works of art ever.

I just received the following EMail from my Mom. I'm posting it for anyone reading this who also loves Andrew Wyeth's art and was saddened by his passing.

Hi guys...this is (part of) a letter I just got from Heidi. I knew Wyeth had died, but this letter
made me stop and weep. He has been in our life for so long. The "Her Room"
print that Nana and Grampot gave us is hanging over the sofa now. When Don and
I went to Maine with them when I was pregnant with Jen, we went to the little museum
in Rockland and saw that painting. That was where a lot of his work was done and
was housed. Love, Mom

Hello Nella,
How are you?
...The shocker for me on this trip was to discover that Andrew Wyeth had died! Mom and I went over to his beautiful museum, the Brandywine River Museum, on Friday to see his sister Carolyn's show and I noticed that they were hanging long black pieces of crepe down the front of the museum. I didn't really think it through.

When Mom and I got to the second floor, Mrs. Wyeth was there exclaiming about the view from the huge windows and then she bent over a podium to read out of a book. Then we noticed a huge portrait of Andrew and I finally realized what had happened. I just started weeping. He died January 16th and the news got drowned out for me by the inaugural events, I guess. It surprises me because I listen to NPR all the time. I somehow just missed it. I don't know why I was so overwhelmed, but I was. I love his work.

Mom and I are so lucky to have stopped by on Friday. Not only did we catch a glimpse of Betsy, but we saw "Christina's World," which had just been brought down from the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.

And we found out that Saturday would be a memorial day at the museum in his honor -- free all day -- showing of a movie called "Snow Hill," about all the Wyeths in the Brandywine Valley -- viewing of gorgeous satin and black velvet hoods from the 21 honoroary degrees he had received -- a display of all the awards and medals he had received -- and the dress tails of the Institute France des Beaux Arts, which he wore in 1977 when he received that honor. The tails had the most beautiful embroidery all around the edges of the jacket and on the buttons. Wow! He must have loved that. He loved dressing up.

The most poignant thing we saw when we went back on Saturday was the painting he had just given Betsy this 2008 Christmas. It was a beautiful large traditional white frame Maine building standing starkly alone on a knoll above the sea with a little sail boat disappearing off to stage left. The title was, "Goodbye." Oh, my. What did he sense? Apparently, he had fallen a few weeks before and did not recover.

The museum was packed with many people weeping. It was so touching to be there. "Christina's World" and "Goodbye" were only there for the weekend. Perhaps when we saw Betsy on Friday, she was bringing over "Goodbye," or just coming to see how the museum was being decorated for the memorial day.

We saw works we had never seen before. And Carolyn's show was very interesting -- more experimental, more blocky, more contemporary.

(Andrew Wyeth July 12, 1917 - January 16, 2009)


  1. I had to cry all over again when you posted these notes. The critics have no idea the depth of
    affection just regular people have
    for Wyeth's work. Like us. We do
    not care about the critics who have failed to give him his due of late. His paintings capture the essence of things. The souls that
    exist in things in this world, the
    part of the world that we feel beyond our vision. He is called "realistic" and not innovative, but I do not give a flying fig for that appraisal. I
    (WE) know what we love.

  2. Toasty, I couldn't have said it better. Thank you for sharing this letter.

  3. I believe the correct word for said art critic is, "douchebag."

    Perhaps, "asshat."