Road to the Jones House


N. C. Wyeth ( American, 1882 - 1945 )

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General Description

Best known for his vivid and exciting illustrations of American literary classics, N. C. Wyeth worked, for the last several years of his life, on a series of easel paintings exploring the quiet beauty of the country around his summer home in Port Clyde, Maine. Around the same time as he began working on this rural landscape, Wyeth learned tempera painting techniques from his son-in-law, Peter Hurd (1904-1984). He began relying on tempera's subtle color effects and layered application rather than his earlier fondness for oil paint or watercolor. Wyeth completed Road to the Jones House in tempera and included it in his first one-man exhibition at Macbeth Galleries in December 1939.

Emily Schiller, Digital Collections Content Coordinator, 2015.

Fun Facts

  • Wyeth named his Maine residence "Eight Bells" after Winslow Homer's famed image of two fisherman working amidst a frothy, gray sea (Eight Bells, 1886, Addison Gallery of American Art).
  • The Road to Jones House was included in N.C. Wyeth's first one-man exhibition at Macbeth Galleries in December 1939 and the art critic Royal Cortissoz (New York Herald Tribune) singled it out as a highlight of the show saying, "It is his precision that ultimately makes his work attractive, the linear delicacy with which he defines his subjects. One of the most engaging examples is The Road by the Jones House, a picture redolent of the American countryside. The telegraph pole in the foreground, the house and the tree just beyond, are drawn with the utmost exactitude, but an air of breath somehow envelopes the composition." (Royal Cortissoz, "N.C. Wyeth," New York Herald Tribune (December 10, 1939) section 6, page 8.)

Web Resources

  • N.C. Wyeth in Maine
    Read this biographical essay adapted from Christine B. Podmaniczky, N. C. Wyeth in Maine, A Centenary Exhibition (Rockland, ME: Farnsworth Art Museum, 1982).
  • N.C. Wyeth Catalogue Raisonné_
    _Check out the most complete list of the artist's work, hosted by The Brandywine Conservancy & Museum of Art.