When looking for paintings of women sitting in a field, you quickly realize that old paintings of women sitting in a field are rare. Most of the paintings where a woman is depicted sitting in a field have only been created since the end of the 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s. In previous centuries portraits of women sitting were very formal paintings. The tradition of creating more “informal” paintings of women is not so old.
To find paintings of women sitting in a field to discuss in this article, we’ve had a look at some of the famous paintings, such as Emile Bernard’s “Woman Sitting in a Field: Brittany” (1890) and “Brenton Women in the Shade” (1892), as well as “Woman in Pink Skirt Sitting in a Field” by Katherine Beatrice Mcnaughton Mowry and “Women Sitting in Field” by W. Colle.
In the end, we’ve decided to briefly discuss four paintings that art critics regard as some of the best paintings depicting women sitting in a field.
Christina’s World by Andrew Wyeth
One of the best-known and famous paintings of women of the mid-1900s is “Christina’s World” by Andrew Wyeth. This painting of a woman sitting in a field has a sad but still inspiring story linked to it. The painting depicts a woman semi-reclining on the ground in a tawny and treeless field. She is looking at the grayish house on the horizon. Also, there are other small outbuildings and a barn adjacent to the house.
The painting is a tempera work; in other words, it was painted with a permanent, fast-drying paint consisting of colored pigments and a water-soluble binder. It was done in a realistic style. It is part of the Museum of Modern Art in New York’s permanent collection. “Christina’s World” was painted in1948.
In the painting, Wyeth depicted Anna Christina Olson, who suffered from a degenerative muscular disorder. This disease made her walk impossible since she was about 30 years old. She didn’t want to use a wheelchair and preferred to crawl everywhere. When Wyeth saw her from his window crawling across a field, he was inspired to create the painting.
Although Anna was the inspiration and subject for the painting, Wyeth didn’t use her as the primary model. Instead, he used his wife Betsy to pose as the torso of the painting. Olson was 55 when Wyeth created the work.
Christina’s World – Interesting Facts
It is interesting to see how “Christina’s World” has been utilized in popular culture. Let’s look at some instances where the painting has been used or mentioned.
- The painting is mentioned in Arthur C. Clarke’s novel “2001: A Space Odyssey” was hanging on the living room wall of the hotel suite of astronaut David Bowman.
- In issue #28 of the comics series “Preacher,” Jesse Custer is sitting in front of the painting in the museum. The cover of issue #43 is a variation of “Christina’s World.”
- A print of the painting was seen in the sitcom “That Girl” (1966–1971).
- The painting inspired a scene in the 1994 film Forrest Gump.
Pensive Gypsy Girl Sitting in a Field by Marcel Dyf
The French painter Marcel Dyf was born in Paris on October 7, 1899. He is mostly known for how he captured the time of the day and the movement of people in his paintings. He created most works on-site. His artwork romantically imitates life. The viewer of Dyfs work escapes into his reality and experiences a sense of joy and meaning.
“Pensive Gypsy Gil Sitting in a Field” is one of the famous paintings of women created in the 20th century. It is a beautiful French impressionistic oil painting showing a gypsy girl sitting in the field with a piece of hay between her fingers, delicately placing it in her mouth. Unfortunately, the model is unknown, making the beautiful girl more mysterious.
The viewer is drawn to the color and movement in the field around her. This work is considered one of the best portraits of women in a field created in the 1900s.
Woman Sitting in the Grass by Vincent Van Gogh
“Woman Sitting in the Grass” by Van Gogh is one of his most impressionistic paintings of the artist. Its composition and color scheme remind the viewer of the paintings of Renoir and Manet. In this painting, Van Gogh wanted to convey to the viewer the impression of what he saw.
“Women sitting in the grass” depicts a woman sitting on the grass in the shade of a tree. She has soft facial features and an attentive look. Behind the girl, you see a bright sunny area painted rich yellow. Sunlight patches are “playing” on the grass.
Art critics believe that the painting was done quickly because Van Gogh wanted to capture the light in the scenes as he saw them. Fascinated by what he saw, he sketched the figure’s outlines and face. He ignored the accuracy of the subject and was more intrigued by the play of light on the woman’s skin.
The grass was also painted fast with energetic strokes. Van Gogh wanted to convey all the impressions of that moment. The result is a sunny picture, full of optimism.
The Dream by Henri Rousseau
Although “The Dream” by Henri Rousseau is not depicting a woman sitting in a field in the “normal” sense of the word, we include this painting because of its uniqueness regarding paintings of women. In this painting, Rousseau depicted his Polish mistress from his youth, lying naked on a divan “in the field.” She looks at a “field” of lush jungle foliage with flowers and animals. The animals include birds, monkeys, a lion and lioness, an elephant, and a snake.
Rousseau suspected that most viewers would not understand the painting and wrote a poem to accompany the painting. The poem tells the story of the young woman who has fallen asleep, and in her dream, she hears sounds of the field – the music of the snake charmer – and sees the flowers and animals, listening to the joyous tunes of the charmer’s reed instrument.
Interestingly, most paintings depicting women sitting in a field have an interesting “story” linked. Therefore, we hope that discussing the four paintings in this article will entice you to discover more similar paintings. In addition, it might be interesting to see whether you can discover some old paintings of women sitting in a field.