Andrew Wyeth was a widely celebrated American artist who specialized in realist watercolor and tempera paintings of people and landscapes. His best-known work, Christina’s World (1948), depicts a young women laying in the grass and looking towards a farmhouse. Despite the work’s everyday subject matter, it is filled with a haunting sense of urgency and foreboding dread. While his work has been deemed melancholic, the artist preferred to describe it as thoughtful. Throughout his career, Wyeth’s figurative paintings remained popular even in a postwar era dominated by abstraction. The solitary and largely self-taught painter caused controversy in the 1980s with the Helga Pictures, a series of over 200 works that included nudes of a married German housekeeper that would later become Wyeth’s studio assistant.