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Meet the Masters

Grade Five

ARTIST: PRINT:

O'KEEFFE, GEORGIA

(1887 - 1986)

YELLOW CACTUS MAIER MUSEUM OF ART RANDOLPH-MACON WOMAN’S COLLEGE LYNCHBURG, VIRGINIA

20th Century American

Date: 1940 Size: 12" x 16" Medium: Oil on canvas

ARTIST - Among the women painters in the U.S., one of the best known and most outstanding is Georgia O'Keeffe. Born in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, she spent her childhood on a large farm and never lost her love for nature and the land. Her gifts as an artist were clear early in her life, and she knew she wanted to become an artist when she was 10 years old. She studied at the Chicago Art Institute and Art Students' League in New York. She worked as a commercial artist in Chicago, and as an art teacher in Texas and South Carolina.

Georgia O'Keeffe had her first one-person show in New York City in 1917. A famous photo- grapher, Alfred Stieglitz, saw her work, recognized her talent, and decided to show her art in his '291 Gallery'. O'Keeffe married Stieglitz in 1924. Afterwards, she lived half of the year in New York City with her husband. The rest of the year she spent in New Mexico painting the countryside that she loved so much.

PRINT - O’Keeffe’s flower studies, enlarged to fill the entire canvas, undergo a transformation as a result of their magnification. The simple beauty of nature’s forms becomes exalted, a thing of mystery. This painting is a study of the desert cactus in a rare moment of blooming; the lovely yellow flowers create a sharp contrast to the prickly thorns and dull green color the mother plant wears the rest of the year. The enlarged petals form a decorative pattern that moves diagonally across the surface of the canvas. The Yellow Cactus is a celebration of the desert flower.

PORTFOLIO B PAIRED WITH:

O’KEEFFE RANCHOS CHURCH ANONYMOUS MISSISSIPPI HOME

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