The Easel

Archives: The New Criterion

15th September 2020

Where’s Betsy?

Short, but intriguing. The widow of American painter Andrew Wyeth died earlier this year. She had been a major presence in his life. – Wyeth told his biographer “Betsy galvanized me … she made me see more clearly what I wanted.” So why did she feature so rarely in his works and, on those rare occasions, seem “absent emotionally”? “Maybe Betsy hated sitting for her husband … [or perhaps] he needed to escape Betsy … the “director,” as she called herself.”