The Olson House
If you are familiar with Andrew Wyeth’s famous painting, Christina’s World, then you may already know what this place is all about. We weren’t. We looked at the map and saw the “Olson” house and we just had to go and check it out. Once we got there and started on the tour, we realized we had seen the painting many times and the tour became very interesting indeed!
This 14-room Colonial farmhouse in Cushing, Maine is almost empty and in pretty rough shape, but the story behind it is so beautiful. Be sure and take the tour if you visit because I’m sure you will agree. Be sure to get good directions before you head out there too. We had trouble finding it and once we finally arrived, we were so relieved we didn’t give up the hunt for it.
Wyeth was inspired to paint “Christina’s World” by his friendship with Christina Olson, who had lost the use of her legs to polio.
“The Olson House is the subject of numerous works of art by Andrew Wyeth, including his 1948 painting Christina’s World, now owned by the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Wyeth’s series of drawings, watercolors and tempera paintings featuring Christina Olson, her brother Alvaro and the house itself, occupied Wyeth from 1939 through 1968.”
“Wyeth expressively documented life on the isolated, saltwater farm in many of his works. He said, “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.” For him, Christina and the Olson House were symbols of New England and Maine. He once remarked, “I just couldn’t stay away from there. I did other pictures while I knew them but I’d always seem to gravitate back to the house. … It was Maine.” – READ MORE
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