Marcia Strykowski

American Painters of the 1970s

artist-paintbrushesIf you’ve read Amy’s Choice, then you’ve met Finn. He is a lighthouse keeper and talented painter. In 1973, he lives on a small island across from Amy’s home in Port Wells. Finn paints beautiful coastal scenery using oils and canvas.

This of course is NOT from the 70s, but is Winslow Homer's famous Sunlight on the Coast from 1890.

Winslow Homer’s famous Sunlight on the Coast from 1890.

Obviously, the above painting is not from the 70s, but at least it’s a gorgeous scene of Maine, the same location where Finn paints. Due to copyright laws, I’m not able to post any of the artwork from more recent artists (Google them!).

Two times in Amy’s Choice, Finn mentions his admiration for real-life painter Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009). A good place to view Andy’s work is at the Wyeth Center, a part of the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland, Maine. Click here for another post about Andrew Wyeth and here to view illustrations by his famous father N. C. Wyeth.

A few other American painters who were popular during the 1970s were Norman Rockwell (1894-1978)

“Some people have been kind enough to call me a fine artist. I’ve always called myself an illustrator. I’m not sure what the difference is. All I know is that whatever type of work I do, I try to give it my very best. Art has been my life.” Norman Rockwell

Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986)

I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way–things I had no words for.” Georgia O’Keeffe

and Andy Warhol (1928-1987)

Don’t think about making art, just get it done.  Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it.  While they are deciding, make even more art.” Andy Warhol

Peter_Max_-_Stamp_2Speaking of pop art, who remembers Peter Max (1937–)? This old stamp will remind you of his bold cosmic style. More recently, you may have seen his colorful artwork covering a Continental Airlines super jet or the hull of the Norwegian Breakaway cruise ship.

peter max 2 - Copy - CopyI wish I could post paintings by these amazing American artists, but hardly any of their works are in the public domain. We’ll have to settle for a photograph of Peter Max and me hanging out at the Ritz-Carlton in Boston last summer—long story!

  “I never know what I’m going to put on the canvas. The canvas paints itself. I’m just the middleman.” Peter Max


  1. Interesting! Thanks for sharing.


  2. Ashley

    Thanks for another very interesting post. I can’t believe you met Peter Max!!!


  3. Bette Norton

    I love all of the artists you mentioned above. I have been to the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland, Maine and I enjoyed paintings by N.C. Wyeth, his son Andrew Wyeth and Andrew’s son Jamie Wyeth.
    I have also seen great exhibitions of Winslow Homer and Jamie Wyeth at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Both of these artists have captured the Maine Coast beautifully. The Norman Rockwell Museum in Lenox, Mass is a great place to go filled with many of Rockwell’s enjoyable works.. . I also love Georgia O’Keeffe’s beautiful paintings of vibrant bold colors. A friend of mine who lives in Lake George, New York, has one of her paintings of Lake George, hung over her fire place mantle. Georgia O’Keeffe spent a lot of time up there. I enjoyed reading Amy’s Choice and getting to know Finn and his life as a painter and lighthouse keeper.
    Very exciting that you met Peter Max! Wonderful post!


    • I’m glad you enjoyed the post, Bette. Sounds like you have connections with a lot of beautiful art. My friend Louise added a comment to my Andrew Wyeth post about visiting the Olson House in Cushing, ME. You might like to visit there, as well. Thanks for your great comment!


  4. Bette Norton

    Hi Marcia! I actually have visited the Olson House in Cushing, Maine. It was very worth while seeing. Andrew Wyeth painted Christina’s World on the Olsen property. It is one of my favorite paintings of Andrew Wyeth. .


  5. Adore that Warhol quote. What affirming words to keep going when creative times are difficult.


  6. Thanks for all the links. Maybe you’ll write about your Peter Max experience some day!


    • You’re welcome, Barbara! I’ll have to think about that idea. 🙂


  7. Rene

    Waay cool! I appreciate you penning this article plus the rest of the website is really good.


  8. Rubin

    Hi there, just wanted to mention, I liked this
    post. It was helpful. Keep on posting!


  9. Marisa

    I look for information about Gauseppe Maconi painter


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