Georgia O’Keeffe – Famous Woman Painter Of Our Time

Homage to the Great American Artist Georgia O’Keeffe

“I have but one desire as a painter – that is to paint what I see, as I see it, in my own way, without regard for the desires or taste of the professional dealer or the professional collector.”-  Georgia O’Keeffe

Famous Women Painter Of Our Time

The most famous woman painter of our time was Georgia O’Keeffe (1887- 1986) . She is best known for her dramatic paintings of gigantic flowers and sun-bleached desert bones. She was independent and loved to be alone. She expressed herself through pictures and colours and every painting told a different story. She didn’t care much for fame and fortune and painted for herself. She helped many people believe that being independent doesn’t mean you are alone or lonely.

It was the sight of a tiny flower in a still life by Fantin-Latour that prompted her to adopt a magnified perspective: “A flower is relatively small. Everyone has many associations with a flower .  Still, in a way, nobody sees a flower really it is so small,we haven’t time  and to see takes time, like to have a friend takes time. So I said to myself, I’ll paint what I see ,what the flower is to me but I’ll paint it big and they will be surprised into taking time to look at it. I will make even busy New Yorkers take time to see what I see of flowers.”

Relationship With Alfred Steiglitz Famous Photographer

At a time when men and women had extraordinarily stringent gender roles, Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O’Keeffe’s relationship placed them as equals both personally and professionally, with each other’s desired role being determined wholly by their individual wants. It is no surprise that two people who could form this type of bond would be largely responsible for setting the modern and post-modern art stage. O’Keeffe was one of the first female artists to rise to prominence in her time, and over her long and fruitful life, she produced a body of work that has become iconic.

In 1916, Stieglitz was shown the drawings of a young art teacher in Texas named Georgia O’Keeffe. Without meeting her, he was instantly taken by her work. Once O’Keeffe was in New York, she became Stieglitz’s muse. Stieglitz had grown up with twin siblings and had always longed for a twin of his own, which he claimed to have finally found in O’Keeffe. Stieglitz took more than 350 portraits of her, one of which, titled “Hands,” sold in 2006 for $1.47 million.

In turn, Stieglitz promoted O’Keeffe tirelessly, and she became famous for her still-life paintings of flowers, abstracted and approached with a point of view that focused on their intricacies of shaps instantly taken by the work and made plans to show it. By the summer of 1917, they were frequently writing to each other between New York and Texas, and soon after, O’Keeffe moved to New York into a studio space provided for her by Stieglitz.

In the period from 1918 to 1932 O’Keeffe produced more than 200 flower paintings, in which common flowering plants such as roses, petunias, poppies, camellias, sunflowers, bleeding hearts and daffodils are accorded the same significance as rare blooms such as black irises and exotic orchids. One of the flowers that she regularly treated in larger-than-life format was the calla lily. This subsequently became her “emblem” in the eyes of the public, and one which the Mexican artist Miguel Covarrubias took up in his caricature of O’Keeffe as “Our Lady of the Lily”, which appeared in the New Yorker in 1929. Calla lilies had first caught the artist’s eye in a florist’s shop at Lake George: “I started thinking about them because people either liked them or disliked them intensely, while I had no feeling about them at all.”

Their relationship lasted — through many challenges, for sure — until Stieglitz’s death in 1946. O’Keeffe scattered his ashes and donated his photographs to museums all over the world, with the largest collection going to the National Gallery. O’Keeffe then moved to her home in Abiquiu, New Mexico, full-time, where she took inspiration from the surrounding scenery for the rest of her very long life.

Art Museum

The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, opened to the public in July 1997, eleven years after the death of the artist from whom it takes its name.

Welcoming more than 2,225,000 visitors from all over the world and being the most visited art museum in the state of New Mexico, it is the only museum in the world dedicated to an internationally known American woman artist.

The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum’s education and public programs have won praise from parents, educators and school administrators, as well as awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, New Mexico Arts and Santa Fe Arts Commission.

Museum Information

Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
217 Johnson Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501

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