Three generations of Wyeth paintings are currently on view, in recognition of a generous bequest to Philbrook
from the Marylouise Cowan Trust. Included in this gift are fifteen original Wyeth paintings that will be featured in The Wyeth Legacy: Paintings by N.C., Andrew, and Jamie from the Cowan Collection, through March 20, 2011. Two watercolor still lifes by Oklahoma artist P.S. Gordon were also included in the gift.
A valued community philanthropist, Cowan served on the board of the Philbrook Museum of Art and the Tulsa Town Hall before being inducted into the Tulsa Historical Society Hall of Fame in 2000.
Cowan was born in Tulsa in 1921 and moved to Maine in 1979 with her husband Howard. There they published two local newspapers and were active donors at the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland. Cowans spirit of philanthropy returns to Tulsa with this significant bequest which will greatly complement Philbrooks permanent holdings in American Art.
The Wyeth family legacy spans three generations and is largely synonymous with American realism. From the beloved illustrations and colorful adventures of N.C. Wyeth (1812-1945) to the psychologically loaded spaces of son Andrew (1917-2009), the Wyeths poetic dialogue with nature continues in the images of farm and island life by grandson Jamie (b. 1946).
A prominent artistic family much like the colonial Peale family, the Wyeths are of great note in American art. During the maelstrom of change that characterized much of the twentieth century, the Wyeths carried the torch of realism proudly, celebrating an enduring simplicity of country life.