Georgia OKeeffes Flower Paintings and Their Critical Reception in the 1920s - Term Paper Example

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The paper "Georgia O’Keeffe’s Flower Paintings and Their Critical Reception in the 1920s" highlights that O’Keeffe did not use the deconstructed, dislocated or fragmented styles of Cubism in her flower paintings. Most of her works in this genre were of single flowers, rarely did she use more than one flower…
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Georgia OKeeffes Flower Paintings and Their Critical Reception in the 1920s
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Download file to see previous pages At the age of fifteen, O’Keeffe moved with her family to Williamsburg, Virginia. She studied art from 1905 to 1912 and took up teaching for two years, in the Texas Panhandle, where she found the vast, dry country with heavy winds to be remarkable in its beauty (Goodrich and Bry 9). “A trip to northern New Mexico renewed a passion for sky, mountains, and magnificent vistas” (Harvey 36) earlier experienced when teaching in west Texas fifteen years ago”. O’Keeffe loved her country America and its natural beauty in all its manifestations.

As an artist, “the sun and sky; mountains and plains; trees, plants, and flowers were her frequent subjects” (Davidson 62). With great clarity and vibrancy, she revealed these as dynamic, growing forms, and not as stationary objects. Her flower paintings are particularly noteworthy in their sheer numbers, over 200, as well as in their beauty, realistic depictions, magnification to a huge size, and close examination of their form.

O’Keeffe enlarged the image of the bloom to fill the frame, crowding out the other parts of the flower and its surrounding environment. For example, her painting of the Black Iris, 1926 is seen at close quarters (Fig.1).

As seen in Fig. 1 below, the natural object stood out in the foreground, facing the spectator with a stark, almost frightening nearness. The oil on canvas painting of the Black Iris, 1926 by O’Keeffe is a monumental piece of art, and one of the artist’s masterpieces. She captures the fleeting colours of the springtime flower using a subtle gradation of shades and hues, from “impenetrable black-purple and deep maroon to soft pinks, greys, and whites” (MetMuseum, 2012). Expanding the petals to over-lifesize proportions, O’Keefe compels the viewer to face that which may otherwise be overlooked, thereby raising the level of the ordinary to the extraordinary. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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