N.C. Wyeth
October 19, 2005 4:53 AM   Subscribe

Sixty years ago today, artist N.C. Wyeth died when the car he was driving was hit by a train. He illustrated a long shelf of children's classics, including Robinson Crusoe, Last of the Mohicans, and of course Treasure Island. Wyeth was also the patriarch of an artistic family, including his son Andrew and grandson Jamie. He honed his craft at Howard Pyle's school of illustration. You can take a virtual tour of his studio, and see the original paintings at the Brandywine River Museum.
posted by marxchivist (12 comments total)
This is a great post. Thanks for all of the links. Wyeth's illustrations for Robinson Crusoe are a big love of mine. I'd never seen this drawing of Odysseus tied to the mast. He looks so much like a sexy Christ!
posted by OmieWise at 5:17 AM on October 19, 2005

he did the illustrations for a copy of the arthurian tales that was intended for kids that I used to read constantly as a kid.

posted by shmegegge at 5:18 AM on October 19, 2005

that would be this book, actually. although it had a lot more illustrations than just those three in it.
posted by shmegegge at 5:20 AM on October 19, 2005

I grew up with frequent trips to that museum, never realizing the goodness there until I got older and moved away.
posted by moonbird at 5:35 AM on October 19, 2005

Excellent links. You can also see N.C. and Jamie Wyeth's work at the Wyeth Center of the Farnsworth Museum in Rockland Maine. This is a nice time of year to head up there, as well.
posted by SteveInMaine at 5:36 AM on October 19, 2005

Years ago, I knew an artist who had a large NC Wyeth painting as the centerpiece of her loft. It was of fairytale type princess with a pointy hat and ribbon, in front of a castle.

If I remember the story of how she came to own it correctly, her father was in management of one of the big american car companies (GM?) ... when Wyeth had a serious problem with his car. My friend's father helped Wyeth convince GM to fix his car even though it was just out of the warranty. As a thank you, Wyeth sent the painting for the GM exec's newborn daughter (my artist friend).

(One can only hope that it wasn't the car that got hit by the train.)
posted by R. Mutt at 7:15 AM on October 19, 2005

Thank you Marxchivist. A well-linked post.
Wyeth was both prolific and has a wide range of styles. Most excellent. I'd never heard of him.
posted by peacay at 8:15 AM on October 19, 2005

Fantastic post, thanks. I love N.C. Wyeth. That's a great story as well, R. Mutt.
posted by GriffX at 8:26 AM on October 19, 2005

Great post. Another great place to see Wyeth's work (and the work of other Pyle students) is at The Delaware Art Museum (where I worked back in college).
posted by amro at 10:10 AM on October 19, 2005

And years later, NC's grandson, Howie Wyeth played drums for Dylan, Leslie West, Don MaClean, and more.
posted by aieou at 1:10 PM on October 19, 2005

Great story R.Mutt, thanks. I didn't know about the Wyeth/Dylan connection. According to Allmusic.com, Howie Wyeth part of Dylan's Rolling Thunder Revue.

I remember as a kid getting The Mysterious Island from the library, and forcing myself not to look at the pictures until I had read up to that page because I thought they were so cool I wanted them to last.
posted by marxchivist at 3:00 PM on October 19, 2005

I remember finding my dad's childhood copy of Treasure Island at my grandparents' house when I was a kid, and just staring at the illustrations for hours. Nice post -- thanks!
posted by scody at 3:52 PM on October 19, 2005

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