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O’Keeffe Museum: new thematic galleries

geogia o'keeffe book | MyGeorgiaOKeeffe.comAre you headed to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum? Here’s the news from its recent newsletter about a change in gallery design:

By now you might have heard that the Museum has changed to a new thematic gallery style of exhibition. This is an exciting change for the Museum, and here’s what you need to know about it!

What does this mean?
The Museum has introduced a new series of galleries organized by theme to offer a deeper understanding of O’Keeffe’s art, life, and times. Each theme offers an overarching narrative for understanding the artworks and objects within. From time to time, the contents of the galleries will change, even as the themes remain constant, allowing new objects to go on view. Special projects and installations will still be featured to shed new light and present fresh perspectives on Georgia O’Keeffe.

Why did the Museum make the change?
We are constantly striving to improve the visitor experience and make our collections meaningful. Based on audience research and visitor feedback, we know that many visit with high expectations of seeing hundreds of the best known artworks. While our collection is singular for its size and comprehensive nature, we cannot always show the most well-known images, in part because O’Keeffe herself placed many of her great works at museums across the country. This, coupled with our space limitations, means we need to find innovative and engaging ways to create an outstanding experience and make the most of our collections.

What will I see in the galleries now?
You’ll see nine galleries, arranged by themes, including Abstract Nature, Becoming a Modern Artist, Georgia O’Keeffe’s New Mexico, My New Yorks, American Icon(s), Preserving a Legacy, and Wideness and Wonder of the World. Detailed descriptions of each gallery can be found here.

The Museum might not have every iconic piece that O’Keeffe completed in her lifetime, but we do have truly unique treasures, offering our visitors a deep understanding of this American master. You will see more sketchbooks, more bones, and more archival materials. You will see more about her homes and studios reflected in the galleries. You will see more about her influences and the people in her life. And you will see relationships between these materials enliven and illuminate our understanding of the many remarkable paintings that remain the centerpiece of each gallery. All in all, be prepared to get an experience and understanding of O’Keeffe you can’t get anywhere else in the world!

Ann Daly PhD is an essayist specializing in women and women's history. She is working on a book about Georgia O'Keeffe.

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