I had the experience, once, of viewing an O’Keeffe exhibit that made me question what I had ever admired in the artist. The paintings felt curiously lifeless, and as a whole the show didn’t seem to add up to much. O’Keeffe understood early on that the way paintings are hung determine how they are perceived. […]
The 50-year friendship between Georgia O’Keeffe and Ansel Adams began when they met in Taos, New Mexico, in 1929. It’s no surprise that O’Keeffe, who loved to trek across big country in Texas and New Mexico, took to him. He was an intrepid photographer, clambering over dangerous terrain to make his iconic photographs. (In late […]
I spend so much time hunkered down, doing research and developing a book proposal, that I haven’t been posting much lately. Sorry about that! But my friend and actress extraordinaire Francesca Christian coaxed me into doing an interview, the first in her series called “On the Horizon.” She asked terrific questions (why O’Keeffe, what’s the […]
A “sculpture” by “Anton Kubek,” dreamed up by Georgia O’Keeffe and Frances O’Brien. Photo by Frances O’Brien. Gift of Brian and Bina Garfield in Honor of Frances O’Brien. Frances O’Brien Papers. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. Just in case we thought Georgia O’Keeffe was all work and no play . . . This picture, accessed from the […]
Am taking a little break from wall-to-wall O’Keeffe research, and I thought you could use a little break, too! (If the video embed does not show above, you can click through to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acJ00D4SALw.)
As an art student in New York, Georgia O’Keeffe realized that any distraction, like dancing late into the night, would impinge upon her prime directive: to paint. For her, anger was just another distraction.
My (seemingly endless) research on Georgia O’Keeffe leads me down a lot of unexpected paths, none more enchanting than the comic strip I recently discovered. Lest we assume that O’Keeffe appeals mostly to women, and mostly older women, consider the case of Todd Webb, a cartoonist/illustrator and songwriter who has taken his inspiration from the […]
“I feel I’m a very religious person — religion to me means respect for people — but I’m not in a religion.”
“Starlight Night” (1917) featured on Georgia O’Keeffe’s Christmas card in 1963. Georgia O’Keeffe was not religious in the institutional sense, but she was deeply spiritual and certainly enjoyed a good ritual. She usually celebrated Christmas with friends, and sent Christmas cards, including one in 1963 that reproduced her 1917 masterpiece, “Starlight Night” (above). In the […]
“White Flower,” 1932. Abby Aldrich Rockefeller gave this Georgia O’Keeffe painting to the College of William & Mary to mark the artist’s honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts. (Copyright Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, ARS) (Muscarelle Museum of Art) That Kate Alfriend must have been one heck of a charmer. In 1938, Georgia O’Keeffe made no speech when […]
O’Keeffe using her new Leica, 1966. ©2017 Todd Webb Archive From the Todd Webb Archive: “Todd met Georgia O’Keeffe in 1943 at Alfred Stieglitz’s gallery, An American Place. He had dropped off some prints there the previous day and returned to find them propped up on Georgia’s desk with her studying them intently. Their friendship […]
There is no denying that O’Keeffe was an extraordinarily ambitious professional. But it does not necessarily follow that the dearth of other successful women artists was the result of her competitiveness.
Alongside the very elegant rocks at O’Keeffe’s Abiquiu home, she cared for a collection of container plants, including geraniums and a huge jade plant that she had nurtured from a six-inch pot, providing her with “something green.” In case you have insects on your houseplants, O’Keeffe advised: “Puff cigarette smoke on them.”
The young Georgia O’Keeffe, working relentlessly to find her voice as an artist, was ambivalent about viewer reception. She longed for people to understand her art, but she resisted that desire at the same time. Modern art was for art’s sake, and the meaning was hers to know and not necessarily for her viewer to […]
Right from the get-go, Georgia O’Keeffe resisted patriarchy. “I have always resented being told that there are things I cannot do because I am a woman,” she told a National Woman’s Party audience in 1926. “I remember how I used to argue with my brother about which were best, boys or girls. When I argued […]