Christina's World is a 1948 painting by American painter Andrew Wyeth, and one of the best-known American paintings of the middle 20th century. It depicts a woman lying on the ground in a treeless, mostly tawny field, looking up at a gray house on the horizon; a barn and various other small outbuildings are adjacent to the house.
This tempera work, done in a realist style called magic realism, is currently on display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, as a part of its permanent collection.
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The woman in the painting is Anna Christina Olson (3 May 1893 - 27 January 1968). She is likely to have suffered from Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a genetic polyneuropathy. Wyeth was inspired to create the painting when he saw her crawling across a field while he was watching from a window in the house. Wyeth had a summer home in the area and was on friendly terms with Olson, using her and her younger brother as the subjects of paintings from 1940 to 1968. Although Olson was the inspiration and subject of the painting, she was not the primary model--Wyeth's wife Betsy posed as the torso of the painting. Olson was 55 at the time Wyeth created the work.
The house depicted in the painting is known as the Olson House, and is located in Cushing, Maine. It is open to the public and is operated by the Farnsworth Art Museum. It is a National Historic Landmark, and has been restored to match its appearance in the painting. In the painting, Wyeth separated the house from its barn and changed the lay of the land.
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Reception and history
Christina's World was first exhibited at the Macbeth Gallery in Manhattan in 1948. Although it received little attention from critics at the time, the painting was quickly bought by Alfred Barr, the founding director of MoMA, for $1,800. Barr promoted the painting at MoMA and it gradually grew in popularity over the years. Today, it is considered an icon of American art and is rarely loaned out by the museum.
Source of the article : Wikipedia