Georgia O’Keefe and wrangler Orville Cox,
photographed by Ansel Adams

Georgia O’Keefe was a real pioneer, an artist ahead of her time.  Here as some fun facts about her:

  • Married to photographer Alfred Steiglitz, he took over 300 pictures of her, often nude.
  • Was the first woman to receive a retrospective show at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. (1946)
  • Sold her first giant flower painting in 1928, at age 41, for $25,000. In fact, she sold six of them, which apparently was the largest single sale to a living American artist at that time.
  • In 1985, the year before she died, one sold for $1,000,000.
  • She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Gerald Ford, and the National Medal of Arts from Ronald Reagan.
  • A dinosasur fossil is named after her.

Effigia Okeeffeae

  • She lived to be 98, 1887 – 1986
  • She often painted in the nude.
  • She was considered pretty cantakerous her entire life, not having patience for children and often ignoring people she didn’t like – which consisted of fans, agressive men, competitive women and anybody that told her what to do!

The Mona Lisa, O’Keefe


Here are some Georgia O’Keefe quotes.

“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way – things I had no words for.”

“I’ve been absolutely terrified every moment of my life – I’ve never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.”

“Singing has always seemed to me the most perfect means of expression. It is so spontaneous. And after singing, I think the violin. Since I cannot sing, I paint. ”

“I hate flowers – I paint them because they’re cheaper than models and they don’t move.”

“I have things in my head that are not like what anyone has taught me – shapes and ideas so near to me – so natural to my way of being and thinking that it hasn’t occurred to me to put them down. ”

“It was in the 1920s, when nobody had time to reflect, that I saw a still-life painting with a flower that was perfectly exquisite, but so small you really could not appreciate it.”

“Sun-bleached bones were most wonderful against the blue – that blue that will always be there as it is now after all man’s destruction is finished. ”

“You get whatever accomplishment you are willing to declare.”

“I believe I would rather have Stieglitz like something – anything I had done – than anyone else I know.”

“I had to create an equivalent for what I felt about what I was looking at – not copy it.”

“I know now that most people are so closely concerned with themselves that they are not aware of their own individuality, I can see myself, and it has helped me to say what I want to say in paint.”

“I often painted fragments of things because it seemed to make my statement as well as or better than the whole could.”

Do you have a favorite Georgia O’Keefe painting?  Finding out these few facts about her made me curious, I’m going to read her biography next



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