Friday, October 10, 2008

A Passion for O'Keefe: A Tiffanny Fraticelly Perspective on an Artist

Georgia O’Keefe
By:: Tiffanny Fraticelly
Class of 2009

Georgia O'Keeffe was born in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin on November 18, 1887. In 1905, O'Keeffe attended the Art Institute of Chicago before moving to New York City to study at the Art Students League in New York20City in 1907-08. After working as a commercial artist in Chicago, she became interested in Oriental design. From 1912 to 1914, she worked as a public school art supervisor in Amarillo, Texas, and then moved back to New York City to attend Columbia, where she took art classes conducted by Arthur Wesley Dow. Dow's system of art20education was rooted in Oriental art themes. In 1916, she was appointed department head of art-teacher training at West Texas State Normal College, where she used Dow's philosophy in her teacher-training. She remained at the college through 1918.
Her Marriage
She met Alfred stieglitz a photographer who influenced her and admired her work but Their relationship became sexual, and in time, Stieglitz left his wife for O'Keeffe, who was 24 years his junior. Their love was deep, but their relationship was often stormy; Stieglitz liked city life, with all its noise and broiling activity, while O'Keeffe loved open space and solitude. Stieglitz's cycle of photographs of her extended arguably is his most lasting work.Married to Stieglitz, the proponent of modernism, O'Keeffe's early style featu red intrinsically abstract subject matter such as details of flowers and architectural motifs. Common tropes in her paintings were enlargements of botanical details. Shew was developing her own distinctive, and distinctively American style, an iconography that includes featuring details of plant forms that would one day embrace bleached bones and New Mexican desert landscapes, all sharply rendered.In 1924, she married Steiglitz. Though Stieglitz masterfully shaped her career, there was resentment as Georgia was the epitome of what was then called "the modern woman,” independent, while her husband, of German Jewish stock, had old time European patriarchal prejudices. He at first tried to control her, until they reached an understanding.
Challenges That happened
Georgia eventually had a nervous breakdown and wound up a sanatorium. But always, there was the art.From 1926 to '29, Georgia painted a cycle of New York City views, but her life's work generally focused on simple buildings rather than skyscrapers. Her paintings further simplified the buildings into an archetypal folk architecture that exuded permanence and tranquility.Georgia’s criticism found symbolism in her work, such as the sexual imagery allegedly found in paintings suc h as "Black Iris". Her botanicals subjects in close-up begged an interpretation focused on their generative capacity, and the possibility inherent in these works generates their force and mystery. Her works were full of energy and exalted life.Georgia began spending time in New Mexico in 1929.
Her like's
She became enthralled with the mesas, Spanish architecture, wooden crucifixes, fauna, and desert terrain. These all became elements in her work, which are characterized by clarity and unity, her subjects exist in their own worlds."I simply paint what I see," she is quoted as saying. Arguably her most famous visual trope, the sun-bleached skull of a cow, were eternalizations of Thanatos, a counterpoint to her early botanical work suffused with Eros. O'Keeffe did not go in for symbolism and argued that the skulls were merely symbols of the desert and of nothing else "To me, they are strangely more living than the animals walking around -- hair, eyes and all, with their tails switching."Georgia bought an old adobe house in New Mexico in 1945 and moved there after Steiglitz's death in 1946. The house became one of her most frequent subjects. Her style simplified details of doors, windows, and walls to where they seemed like unmodified planes of color, an abstractio n In the 1960s, patterns of clouds and landscapes seen from the air..

My favorite art

My favorite art work that she did was the Two Jimson Weeds painted in 1938. She inspires me to draw what I feel and I believe she had such a wonderful gift because painting like her that’s unique and I admire her very much. She died nearly 100-years-old she continued to paint until a few weeks before her death. She died on March 6, 1986.

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At October 11, 2008 at 5:19 AM , Blogger Ohkono said...


If you recall Proffesor Rallo Jame's presentation abt Henri Matisse...Matisse also became more artistic after being in the hospital, like O'Keefe....Do you think their is a connection between vulnerability and art...?

If you enjoy the story of Georgia O'Keefe, I think you would love the story of Frida Kahlo as well...Cant wait to read your next article!

Ms. G

At October 20, 2008 at 6:05 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes i do think that their is a connection between vulnerability and art, i believe this because when people get sick they experienced different emotions because they might feel like they are going to die.

Ive heard about Frida kahlo but never really studied her past maybe that could be my next assigment...

Tiffany F

At October 20, 2008 at 6:28 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow great article! do you think you would want to be an artist too?


At October 20, 2008 at 6:30 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

well i love art but i dont think its my special thing to main goal is to go to college and study medicine and become a plastic serguon...

Tiffanny F

At October 24, 2008 at 6:37 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really liked how you explained the true facts about the artist but how does he inspire you? does he makes u want to become a true artist yourself?

At October 24, 2008 at 7:55 AM , Blogger Ohkono said...

Hey Tiffany: There is a play about Gerogia's life currently showing..Check out the following....

A new play, written by and starring Natalie Mosco, tracking the artistic and romantic life of celebrated American painter Georgia O’Keeffe.

St. Luke’s Theatre
308 W. 46th St., New York, NY 10036
Tickets: 212-239-6200
Schedule Buy Tickets

Ongoing Mon, Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm


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