Exhibitions

Virtual Tour: Phyllis Mills Wyeth: A Celebration

Feb 8, 2020 - Jan 3, 2021

To enjoy the full experience of the 360° tour, click and drag your mouse around the room to view all of the artwork. Click on the "i" button for information and detailed images, and click the arrows to move back and forth between galleries. To view fullscreen, click the three vertical dots at the top right. 

A memorial exhibition celebrating the life of Phyllis Mills Wyeth (November 13, 1940–January 14, 2019) features a selection of portraits created by her husband, contemporary artist Jamie Wyeth. From the late 1960s, and throughout the decades of their marriage, Phyllis Wyeth was his muse. He created intimate works that capture moments from her life. Phyllis Mills Wyeth: A Celebration features 31 paintings and drawings and reflects Phyllis’ vibrant spirit and love of nature, horses, and her ever-present dogs.

The exhibition and accompanying catalogue were organized by the Brandywine River Museum of Art (Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania), the first venue. It then traveled to the Farnsworth Art Museum (Rockland, Maine) and the Greenville County Museum of Art (Greenville, South Carolina), after which the National Sporting Library & Museum (Middleburg, Virginia) was added as a venue. 

Wyeth’s local ties run deep. She was the younger sister of Middleburg resident Mimi Abel Smith, a Board member of NSLM and a lifelong sporting enthusiast who hunted with Orange County as well. Abel Smith has fond memories of their life in Middleburg. They grew up outside of the village on Burnt Mill Farm next to Hickory Tree Farm, a renowned Thoroughbred breeding, training, and racing facility founded by their parents, Mr. and Mrs. James P. Mills, Sr. “My sister loved to ride and jump horses and compete in point-to-points,” notes Abel Smith, “And she was very good at it.”

NSLM Executive Director Elizabeth von Hassell was a strong supporter of bringing Phyllis Mills Wyeth: A Celebration to the NSLM and notes, “The exhibition is an intimate tribute by one of the most recognized artists of our time to his wife, a loving testimony to their 50-year marriage, and the embodiment of Phyllis’s tenacious spirit. I can’t think of a more fitting location to celebrate Phyllis Wyeth’s sporting legacy.” 

Watch the gripping story of Phyllis Mills Wyeth and her Belmont Stakes Winner "Union Rags: An American Love Story," 2012 film

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Sable (1988), oil and gesso on panel, 30 x 40 inches
on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Sable (1988), oil and gesso on panel, 30 x 40 inches
on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Connemara (1987), oil on canvas, 37 x 73 inches, on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Connemara (1987), oil on canvas, 37 x 73 inches, on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Stealing Holly From the Irenees (2016), Acrylic, gesso, and oil on panel, 23 x 29 inches
on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection

Jamie Wyeth (American, b. 1946)
Stealing Holly From the Irenees (2016), Acrylic, gesso, and oil on panel, 23 x 29 inches
on loan from The Phyllis and Jamie Wyeth Collection