Christina’s World: From Painting to Novel

Lecture by Christina Baker Kline

Presented by the Farnsworth Art Museum

Andrew Wyeth, talking about Christina Olson, a woman living in a salt-water farmhouse in Cushing, Maine, whom he painted for many years, said, “The shadow of [her] head against a door has a ghostly quality, eerie, fateful, serious, a symbol of New England people in the past – as they really were. There’s a feeling that, yes, you’re seeing something that’s happening momentarily, but it’s also a symbol of what always happened in Maine. The eternity of a moment." 

What was Christina’s world really like? Why was Andrew Wyeth so drawn to it that he devoted many years to capturing it on canvas? These were the questions that obsessed novelist Christina Baker Kline (bestselling author of Orphan Train) as she wrote her new novel, Christina’s World, inspired by the iconic 1948 American painting that hangs at the Museum of Modern Art in NYC. In this talk, using artwork and photographs, Baker Kline will address the joys and complications of writing a novel about real people; about her creative process and the decisions she’s made along the way; and will share her discoveries about both who Christina really was and why she and her world engaged Wyeth’s interest for so long. 

Christina Baker Kline grew up in Bangor, Maine, as well as in England and the American South. She is the author of five novels, including Orphan Train, which spent more than two years on The New York Times bestseller list, including five weeks at No. 1. It has been chosen as a “One Book, One Read” selection by more than 100 communities and colleges, has been published in 40 countries, and has been shortlisted for, and won, various literary and historical fiction prizes. Christina’s other novels include Bird in Hand, The Way Life Should Be, Desire Lines and Sweet Water; she has also written and edited five nonfiction books. Her new novel, based on the iconic painting Christina's World by Andrew Wyeth, will be published in winter 2017. She splits her time between an old house in Montclair, New Jersey, and an even older house in Southwest Harbor, Maine. 


To purchase tickets please contact Brown Paper Tickets by calling 1-800-838-3006 (available 24/7) or online at You will have the option of having hard copy tickets mailed to you or printing off e-tickets at home. Please present your tickets upon arrival. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for open seating. 

Show Dates & Times:

8/9/16 - Tuesday

7:00 pm,

Cost: $12; $10 members; To purchase tickets please contact Brown Paper Tickets at 1-800-838-3006 (available 24/7) or online at

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