Christina’s World

We stayed in Camden longer than planned so we could go see the Olson farm that captivated Andrew Wyeth and was the setting for Christina’s World. Inspiration for this painting came when Wyeth, standing in an upstairs window, saw Christina crawling across the field. (Internet photo)

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“The challenge to me was to do justice to her extraordinary conquest of a life which most people would consider hopeless,” he wrote. “If in some small way I have been able in paint to make the viewer sense that her world may be limited physically but by no means spiritually, then I have achieved what I set out to do.”  – Andrew Wyeth

Andrew Wyeth spent many hours at the Olson farm where Christina and her brother Alvaro lived. Despite a degenerative muscular condition that left her unable to walk or use her hands, Christina was a formidable personality that fascinated Andrew. The house is large and sparse, echoing the feeling that Wyeth captured in over 300 paintings of the Olsons, their home, and the land.

Olson House

Window and Shells Inside

Shells in Window Outside

“In the portraits of that house, the windows are eyes or pieces of the soul almost. To me, each window is a different part of Christina’s life.”

Per his wishes, Andrew Wyeth is buried near Christina in the family burial ground not far from the house.

 

6 thoughts on “Christina’s World

  1. The presence of Andrew, Christina and Alvaro are strong in this house. Each window opens an emotional response. Several rooms include a print of a Wyeth painting accomplished in that same space, evoking connection.

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