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N.C. WYETH (1882-1945)

 
Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history. Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.
<br>
<br>Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.
<br>
<br>N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.
<br>
<br>This quietly powerful painting of a Native American forms part of a quartet of paintings, inspired by and a metaphor for the four seasons. The paintings were used to illustrate George T. Marsh’s set of poems “The Moods”. Wyeth recognized that the series came at a crucial moment in his career in which the paintings go beyond realism to capture atmosphere and mood, an internal world of emotion made external. He even contemplated and attempted to write his own poems based on these paintings.
<br> 
<br>
<br>Summer, Hush is a striking example of Wyeth pulling from his imagination and melding it with careful observation of nature. As noted in a letter to his mother, Wyeth combined the fictional subject with natural effects as in the sky. Native Americans were a subject he returned to numerous times; these paintings reflect not only Wyeth’s fascination but also of America. As observed by art historian Krstine Ronan, Wyeth was part of a larger dialogue that developed around Native Americans, cementing a general Native American culture in the imagination of the United States. Thus, the painting operates on numerous levels simultaneously. How do we relate to this painting and its conception of the four seasons? How do we interpret Wyeth’s depiction of a Native American? What role do Native Americans play in America’s imagination?
<br>
<br>We must also not forget that these works were first used to illustrate the poems of George T. Marsh. Marsh, a poet born in New York who often also wrote of the Canadian wilderness, provides subtle evocations of the seasons hinted at in the series title “The Moods”. This painting was used alongside “Hush,” which ends:
<br>
<br>Are they runes of summers perished
<br>
<br>That the fisher hears –and ceases—
<br>
<br>Or the voice of one he cherished.
<br>
<br>Within these few lines, Wyeth gives us a thoughtful and restrained painting that stirs from within. The poem and the painting avoid obvious clichés to represent the seasons. They develop a profound interpretation filled with sensitivity.
<br>
<br>These paintings were important to Wyeth who hoped that “they may suggest to some architect the idea that such decorations would be appropriate in a library or capitol or some public building.” Summer, Hush demonstrates Wyeth’s control of color and composition so that small touches such as the ripples of water or the towering cloud that envelopes the figure are in service to sketch out the feeling of summer and of the poem. Through exploring this rich and complex painting, we are better able to appreciate NC Wyeth as an artist and the role this specific painting plays in the context of art history.
Summer. "Hush"190933 3/4 x 30 1/4 in.(85.73 x 76.84 cm) oil on canvas
Provenance
Mr. and Mrs. Edwin R. Wyeth, 1913
Mrs. Edwin Wyeth, to 1988
(Judy Goffman Fine Art, New York, NY, May 1991)
Collection of John Edward Dell, to August 1995
Private collection, New York, to 2008
[Somerville Manning Gallery, Greenville, Deleware, April 2008]
Exhibition
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1910, no. 798 on p. 51, as "Summer"
Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, 1972, no. 12; Greenville, DE, 1995
Greenville, Delaware, Somerville Manning Gallery, N. C. Wyeth: Painter and Illustrator, June 14-Sept. 14, 2019
West Pal
...More...m Beach, Florida, Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens, Figurative Masters of the Americas, January 4 – February 12, 2023
Literature
Betsy James Wyeth, ed., The Wyeths, The Letters of N. C. Wyeth, 1901-1945 (Boston: Gambit, 1971), ps. 312, 313
Douglas Allen and Douglas Allen, Jr., N. C. Wyeth, The Collected Paintings, Illustrations and Murals (New York: Crown Publishers, 1972), p. 275, illustration in b/w p. 62
John Edward Dell, ed., Visions of Adventure, N. C. Wyeth and the Brandywine Artists (New York: Watson-Guptill Publications, 2000), illustration in color p. 64
Christine B. Podmaniczky, N. C. Wyeth, A Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings (London: Scala, 2008), I.284, p. 200
...LESS...
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“Today I started work in the studio and have had a very successful day. Layed in the last Indian picture ‘Summer,’ with sky effect that Babe and I saw at the bridge…” – NC Wyeth in a letter to his mother on “Summer, Hush”

History

Emerging at the end of the Gilded Age, N.C. Wyeth was one of the most important American artists and illustrators. His paintings and illustrations brought life to classic literature from Treasure Island to The Boy’s King Arthur and more. He is most remembered for his ability to capture crucial moments in narratives, fleshing out just a few words into a visual representation of deep drama and tension. Patriarch of the Wyeth artistic dynasty which includes his son Andrew and grandson Jamie, his influence touched future illustrators and artists.

Perhaps his most important legacy is how he shaped American imagination – of America itself and of wild possibilities. Wyeth’s powerful paintings gave life to many of the stories America told of itself. His early paintings captured life of the American West and some of his most beloved illustrations were for novels such as The Last of the Mohicans or short stories like “Rip Van Winkle”. Despite this success, Wyeth struggled with the commercialism of illustrations and advertisements, seeking his work to be accepted as fine art. Throughout his career, he experimented with different styles shifting from Impressionism to Divisionism to Regionalism.

N.C. Wyeth produced over 3,000 paintings and illustrated 112 books. His illustrations for the publisher Charles Scribner’s Sons were so popular they became known as Scribner’s Classics and remain in print to this day.

More
“I have in mind four subjects, ‘Spring’, ‘Summer’, ‘Autumn’, and ‘Winter,’ all symbolically representing the seasons, i.e. carrying the spirit of the season as it were.” – NC Wyeth on the four paintings including “Summer, Hush”

Additional Works Illustrating The Moods by George T. Marsh

"Spring. 'Song'" (1909)

Oil on canvas, 33 3/4 × 30 1/4 in.

"Autumn. 'Waiting'" (1909)

Oil on canvas, 33 1/2 × 29 1/2 in.

"Winter. 'Death'" (1909)

Oil on canvas, 33 × 29 1/2 in.

MARKET INSIGHTS

  • WyethAMR
  • The graph prepared by Art Market Research shows that since 1976, paintings by N.C. Wyeth have increased at a 13.4% annual rate of return.
  • The market graph shows significant growth in the market since 2010, and a sharp increase as recently as 2020.
  • 2 of the 3 top auction results are Western scenes

Top Results at Auction

Tempera on Renaissance panel, 40 x 60 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 23 May 2018.

"Portrait of a Farmer (Pennsylvania Farmer)" (1943) sold for $5,985,900 USD.

Tempera on Renaissance panel, 40 x 60 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 23 May 2018.
Oil on canvas, 43 x 30 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 22 November 2016.

"Hands Up" (1906) sold for $4,951,500 USD.

Oil on canvas, 43 x 30 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 22 November 2016.
Oil on canvas, 46 x 69 1/4 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 28 October 2020.

"Indian Love Call" (1927) sold for $3,510,000 USD.

Oil on canvas, 46 x 69 1/4 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 28 October 2020.

Comparable Paintings Sold at Auction

Oil on canvas, 43 x 30 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 22 November 2016.

"Hands Up" (1906) sold for $4,951,500 USD.

Oil on canvas, 43 x 30 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 22 November 2016.
  • Larger than Summer Hush
  • Painted three years before Summer Hush
  • Similar Western subject matter
  • Originally published as the frontispiece illustration of C.P. Connolly’s The Story of Montana in the August 1906 issue of McClure’s Magazine
Oil on canvas, 46 x 69 1/4 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 28 October 2020.

"Indian Love Call" (1927) sold for $3,510,000 USD.

Oil on canvas, 46 x 69 1/4 in. Sold at Christie’s New York: 28 October 2020.
  • Larger than Summer Hush
  • Painted 16 years after Summer Hush
  • Similar Native American subject
  • Originally painted as a private commission
Oil on canvas, 36 x 30 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 29 November 2006.

"Stand and Deliver" (c. 1921) sold for $2,032,000 USD.

Oil on canvas, 36 x 30 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 29 November 2006.
  • Similar size
  • Painted 12 years after Summer Hush
  • Originally published on the cover of Life magazine on September 22, 1921.
  • Auction record is from 16 years ago.
Oil on canvas, 41 5/8 x 27 1/8 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 20 November 2014.

"The Skier (The Ski Runner)" (1910) sold for $1,205,000 USD.

Oil on canvas, 41 5/8 x 27 1/8 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 20 November 2014.
  • Painted 1 year after Summer Hush
  • Slightly larger than Summer Hush
  • Originally illustrated on the cover of The Popular Magazine’s February 1911 “Month End Edition”
  • Auction record is from 8 years ago
Oil on canvasboard, 18 1/4 x 18 1/4 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 28 November 2007.

"Indian Fishing" (1908) sold for $937,000 USD.

Oil on canvasboard, 18 1/4 x 18 1/4 in. Sold at Sotheby’s New York: 28 November 2007.
  • Painted 1 year before Summer Hush
  • Similar Native American subject
  • Smaller than Summer Hush
  • Originally published on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post on July 18, 1908
  • Auction record is from 15 years ago

Paintings in Museum Collections

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

“The Lobsterman (The Doryman)” (1944), egg tempera on wood, 23 1/4 x 47 1/4 in.

Brandywine River Museum of Art, Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania

“The Hunter” (1906), oil on canvas, 38 7/8 x 26 5/8 in.

Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts

“They Took Their Wives with Them on their Cruises” (c. 1938), oil on board, 34 x 24 in.

Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, Maine

“The Hayride” (c. 1912), oil on canvas, 47 x 35 in.

National Museum of American Illustration, Newport, Rhode Island

“Prestonegrange” (c. 1924), oil on canvas, 39 x 24 in.

Denver Art Museum, Denver Colorado

“Gunfight” (c. 1916), oil on canvas, 33 1/2 x 24 5/8 in.
“I hope the time will never come when I shall feel satisfied. To reach the goal of one’s ambitions must be tragic.” – N.C. Wyeth

Image Gallery

Additional Resources

"My Father" by Andrew Wyeth

Read this biography of N.C. Wyeth written by Andrew Wyeth, celebrated painter and N.C. Wyeth’s son.

The N.C. Wyeth House & Studio

Virtually tour the artist’s home and studio in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania through this video from the Brandywine River Museum of Art.

The Letters of N.C. Wyeth

Read N.C. Wyeth’s letters where he shares insights to his inspiration behind “Summer. ‘Hush.'”

Authentication

See Summer. “Hush”‘s inclusion in Douglas Allen and Douglas Jr.’s catalogue raisonné of N.C. Wyeth’s artwork. 

View Full Catalogue Raisonné Entry

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