Even people who don’t know much about Andrew Wyeth know his iconic painting Christina’s World, an image of Wyeth’s neighbor Christina Olson — crippled by polio — crawling through the tawny grass in front of her house, looking toward the sea. The Olson house is preserved as a museum, and it’s possible to visit the place. Jerry and I rode there from his brother Paul’s place in Owls Head on our bicycles. So unassuming is the house that we blew right by it, winding up at the water’s edge among the lobster boats bobbing in the gentle swells. We turned around and rode back up the hill, and from that vantage point saw the house immediately and went in.
Wyeth has many other paintings of Christina Olson in this SAM show, and this is my favorite, perhaps even more than Christina’s World: