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Exhibition and first retrospective in almost 50 years to highlight artist who inspired creators of “Star Wars” and “Game of Thrones”

The Taft Museum of Art presents N. C. Wyeth: New Perspectives (February 8 through May 3, 2020), the first exhibition in almost 50 years to examine in-depth the entirety of N. C. Wyeth’s (1882–1945) multifaceted body of work. This landmark exhibition brings together approximately 50 of Wyeth’s adventure-packed, large-scale paintings and private works.

  1. C. Wyeth is cited as inspiring “Star Wars” creator George Lucas and “Game of Thrones” author George R. R. Martin, “helping them to imagine what an adventure story might look like.” However, this formidable patriarch of one of America’s most prominent artistic families (including his son, Andrew Wyeth, and his grandson, Jamie Wyeth) is an often-overlooked figure in art history. Wyeth’s work brought to life iconic characters from the stories of Treasure Island, The Last of the Mohicans, The Boy’s King Arthur, and many others published as part of Charles Scribner’s Sons Illustrated Classics series (as well as for other publishers) that are still well-known today.

In addition to his fame as an illustrator, Wyeth also deserves greater appreciation for his little-known fine art paintings. This work exemplifies his artistic evolution from the American impressionist style of the 1910s to the regionalist realism of the 1930s and ’40s associated with artists such as Thomas Hart Benton and Grant Wood. 

Thus, New Perspectives celebrates Wyeth’s artistic breadth, by presenting both his illustrations and his personal work, revealing his love of nature, the contemporary American scene, and a passion for color, light, and narrativemaking a case for his inclusion as a major painter of the early 20th century. 

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