History Of Georgia O ' Keefe

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Georgia O’Keefe was born into Wisconsin farm-life in 1887. Her mother Ida wanted her daughters to be educated, and sent Georgia to a small girl’s boarding school. Although favored by her art teacher, “she was something of a problem pupil. Sometimes she worked intensely, and other times, she refused to work for days and instead pestered the other girls in the studio (Lisle).” When Georgia graduated from the Chatham Episcopal Institute in 1905, she attended the Art Institute of Chicago. Unfortunately, however, she came down with typhoid early in her academic career and was not able to return to art school (Lisle). O’Keeffe received her first teaching job in Amarillo, Texas despite having no real experience. She continued to teach at various…show more content…
She stepped out of the spotlight and many people were not sure if she was still painting or not (Lisle). After being featured in “Where Are They Now?” O’Keefe decided to have her first major museum show since Stieglitz’s death (Lisle). In the early 1970’s O’Keeffe’s eyesight began to go, she “had lost her central vision and retained only peripheral sight (Lisle).” As an artist this was an outrage to her, but she refused to give up. Around her late nineties, she moved to Santa Fe in order to be closer to intensive medical care. She passed away of old age in 1986 of various complications (Lisle). This, Petunia no. 2, was the start of O’Keeffe tendency to paint large flowers. The flower’s form is intensified in an abstract way so that the color and shape are emphasized (Edwards). It is somehow simple and complex at the same time. She claimed “nobody really sees a flower – really – it is so small – we haven’t time – and to see 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 (Lisle)”, which I interpret as O’Keeffe attempting to show the world all the beauty that they pass up on a daily basis. Many critics saw this painting as a hidden symbol representing female genitalia, but that was not something she tried to do on purpose. Well, at the least, she never released a statement saying that she meant to
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