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Georgia O’Keeffe : Living modern – virtual tour

June 14, 2017
THANK YOU Georgia O'Keeffe : Living Modern is organized by guest curator Wanda M. Corn, Robert and Ruth Halperin Professor Emerita in Art History, Stanford University, and coordinated by Lisa Small, Senior Curator of European Painting and Sculpture, Brooklyn Museum. Lead sponsorship for this exhibition is provided by the Calvin Klein Family Foundation. Generous support is also provided by Anne Klein, Bank of America, the Helene Zucker Seeman Memorial Exhibition Fund, Christie's, Almine Rech Gallery, and the Alturas Foundation. The accompanying book is supported by the Wyeth Foundation for American Art and the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Art Foundation and is published by the Brooklyn Museum in association with DelMonico Books-Prestel. We are grateful to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, whose collaborative participation made this exhibition possible. Georgia O'Keeffe : Living Modern is part of A Year of Yes; Reimagining Feminism at the Brooklyn Museum, a yearlong series of ten exhibitions celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Leadership support is provided by Elizabeth A. Sackler, the Ford Foundation, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Anne Klein, the Calvin Klein Family Foundation, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Mary Jo and Ted Shen, and an anonymous donor. Generous support is also provided by Annette Blum, the Taylor Foundation, the Antonia and Vladimer Kulaev Cultural Heritage Fund, Beth Dozoretz, The Cowles Charitable Trust, and Almine Rech Gallery.

THANK YOU
Georgia O’Keeffe : Living Modern is organized by guest curator Wanda M. Corn, Robert and Ruth Halperin Professor Emerita in Art History, Stanford University, and coordinated by Lisa Small, Senior Curator of European Painting and Sculpture, Brooklyn Museum.
Lead sponsorship for this exhibition is provided by the Calvin Klein Family Foundation.
Generous support is also provided by Anne Klein, Bank of America, the Helene Zucker Seeman Memorial Exhibition Fund, Christie’s, Almine Rech Gallery, and the Alturas Foundation. The accompanying book is supported by the Wyeth Foundation for American Art and the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Art Foundation and is published by the Brooklyn Museum in association with DelMonico Books-Prestel.
We are grateful to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, whose collaborative participation made this exhibition possible.
Georgia O’Keeffe : Living Modern is part of A Year of Yes; Reimagining Feminism at the Brooklyn Museum, a yearlong series of ten exhibitions celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art. Leadership support is provided by Elizabeth A. Sackler, the Ford Foundation, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Anne Klein, the Calvin Klein Family Foundation, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Mary Jo and Ted Shen, and an anonymous donor. Generous support is also provided by Annette Blum, the Taylor Foundation, the Antonia and Vladimer Kulaev Cultural Heritage Fund, Beth Dozoretz, The Cowles Charitable Trust, and Almine Rech Gallery.

INTRO

Georgia O’Keeffe has never allowed her life to be one thing and her painting another.
– Frances O’Brien, a longtime friend (1927)

Georgia O’Keeffe (1887―1986) is one of the iconic figures in modern American art, celebrated for her early abstractions, and paintings of flowers and animal bones. Yet even though her paintings are familiar classics of twentieth-century art, and the circumstances of her life are well known, there is still much to discover about how she created her identity beyond the studio. This exhibition takes a new look at how O’Keeffe integrated the modernity of her art and her life, exploring how she used clothing and the way she posed for the camera to shape her public persona. Though she dressed for personal comfort and ease, her wardrobe played a meaningful role in her aesthetic universe; she understood how clothes helped create and reinforce her image as an independent woman and artist.

Rejecting the staid Victorian world into which she was born, O’Keeffe absorbed the progressive principles of the Arts and Crafts Movement, which promoted the idea that everything a person made or chose to live with—art, clothing, home decor—should reflect a unified and visually pleasing aesthetic. Even the smallest acts of daily life, she like to say, should be done beautifully, a philosophy reinforced by her study and appreciation for the arts and cultures of Japan and China.

O’Keeffe applied these principles to her lifestyle comprehensively. The elemental, abstracted forms and serial investigations that characterized her art were also evident in her clothing. Whether hand sewn by her, custom made, or bought off the rack, her garments and the way she styled them emphasized her preference for compact shapes, simple lines, organic silhouettes, and minimal ornamentation. Highlights from sixty years of her wardrobe are presented here alongside her paintings to point out these similarities. Her living spaces—from the austere New York City apartment she shared with Alfred Stieglitz, to her two homes in New Mexico, where her decor melded a spare regional style with high midcentury modern—further demonstrate the self-created visual unity of her life and art.

The many photographic portraits made of O’Keeffe over the course of her life narrate the evolution of a strikingly coherent personal style. They reveal how carefully she dressed and posed for the camera, and how the photographic gaze so often bore witness to the deliberate alliance between the artist’s attire, her art, and her homes. For O’Keeffe, photography played an essential role in shaping and promoting her public identity and helped establish her present-day status—enduring, but to her, unintentional—as an icon of feminism and fashion.

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Hilda Belcher American, 1881-1963 The Checkered Dress (Portrait of O'Keeffe), 1907 Watercolor and gouache on cream laid paper, with JW watermark, mounted on paperboard The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York; Bequest of Mary S. Bedell, class of 1873, 1932.1.5 To pose for Hilda Belcher, who had also studied at the Art Students League of New York, O'Keeffe wore a stylish checkered dress that she most likely made for herself, in the black and white palette she would favor throughout her life. This watercolor, with its tour-de-force detailing of the dress, won Belcher membership in the male-dominated New York Water Color Club. Several years later, a female writer composed a love poem to the then unknown sitter shown in the image; it reads in part: "Could you know, did you guess/Such a daring rhythmic dress/Gleaming here, darkening there,/Would but render you more rare?"

Hilda Belcher
American, 1881-1963
The Checkered Dress (Portrait of O’Keeffe), 1907
Watercolor and gouache on cream laid paper, with JW watermark, mounted on paperboard
The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York; Bequest of Mary S. Bedell, class of 1873, 1932.1.5
To pose for Hilda Belcher, who had also studied at the Art Students League of New York, O’Keeffe wore a stylish checkered dress that she most likely made for herself, in the black and white palette she would favor throughout her life. This watercolor, with its tour-de-force detailing of the dress, won Belcher membership in the male-dominated New York Water Color Club. Several years later, a female writer composed a love poem to the then unknown sitter shown in the image; it reads in part: “Could you know, did you guess/Such a daring rhythmic dress/Gleaming here, darkening there,/Would but render you more rare?”

Eugene E. Speicher American, 1883-1962 Portrait of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1908 Oil on canvas The Art Students League of New York When Eugene Speicher, an older student at the Art Students League, asked O'Keeffe to model for him, she wore a three-piece outfit associated with the so-called New Woman: a white shirtwaist, black skirt and jacket, and black bow at her neck. This combination allowed women to move with greater ease than in conventional Victorian dresses and was a style of reform dress widely endorsed by budding women artists and professional. In 1948, Life magazine ran an image of the sixty-one-old O'Keeffe posed next to the portrait (in a different frame), noting, "she has changed from an unknown youngster to one of the foremost painters in the US." Her personal style, however, has remained the same.

Eugene E. Speicher
American, 1883-1962
Portrait of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1908
Oil on canvas
The Art Students League of New York
When Eugene Speicher, an older student at the Art Students League, asked O’Keeffe to model for him, she wore a three-piece outfit associated with the so-called New Woman: a white shirtwaist, black skirt and jacket, and black bow at her neck. This combination allowed women to move with greater ease than in conventional Victorian dresses and was a style of reform dress widely endorsed by budding women artists and professional. In 1948, Life magazine ran an image of the sixty-one-old O’Keeffe posed next to the portrait (in a different frame), noting, “she has changed from an unknown youngster to one of the foremost painters in the US.” Her personal style, however, has remained the same.

BEGINNINGS
Born on a Wisconsin farm in 1887, O’Keeffe moved with her family to Virginia at age fifteen. After excelling in high school art classes, she took two years of formal art training, one year in Chicago and another in New York, where she was a star pupil and a favorite model for her fellow students. When family finances became precarious, she sought employment as an art teacher, one of the few professions then open to women with her skills. She taught first in Virginia and then, in 1912, went to Texas to teach for two years in the new Amarillo high school. In 1916, she took a prestigious position directing the art program at a new teachers’ college in Canyon, Texas. There, wearing loose black dresses with flat shoes—radically out of character with the dress code of a small town—she became the subject of local curiosity and gossip.

During her teaching years, O’Keeffe came into contact with the influential writings and pedagogy of Arthur Wesley Dow, a painter and printmaker who dismissed the idea of art as an imitative medium and advocated for modern abstraction. One of O’Keeffe’s first deliberate acts as a modernist was to reform the curricula she encountered in the Texasschools where she taught.

She threw out the textbooks that urged artists to copy nature and focused instead on the beauty of pattern and design. She liked to summarize Dow’s philosophy as “filling space in a beautiful way,” and this could be as mundane as where one placed a stamp on an envelope or how one dressed in clearly defined black and white shapes.

In 1916 a friend showed O’Keeffe’s first charcoal abstractions to Alfred Stieglitz, the influential photographer and champion of modern art. He found them so striking that he put a few of them in a group show in his gallery at 291 Fifth Avenue and, in 1917, gave her a one-person exhibition. Around this time, Stieglitz made his first photographic portraits of O’Keeffe, and the two began a courtship by correspondence; he convinced her to leave her Texas teaching post and come to New York to devote herself full time to painting.

Georgia O'Keeffe at Chatham Episcopal School, Chatham, Virginia, 1903 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Family of Judith Maury Tice, RC-2005-001-001

Georgia O’Keeffe at Chatham Episcopal School, Chatham, Virginia, 1903
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Family of Judith Maury Tice, RC-2005-001-001

 Kappa Delta Group Photograph, Chatham Episcopal School, Chatham, Virginia, circa 1903-4 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Family of Judith Maury Tice, RC-2005-001-002 ------------------------- The girls there all thought I was pretty strange, and I thought they were pretty strange. —Georgia O'Keeffe on Chatham Episcopal School O'Keeffe's preference for an austere personal style was apparent even at a young age. In this group portrait, where she is the third from the right, she stands out for her restraint: her white dress has the snuggest sleeves and cuffs, and instead of pushing her hair into a high pompadour with a big floppy bow, like her peers, she pulled her hair straight back into a long pigtail that ended in a modest bow. She liked to use her dress to proclaim her independence, recalling: "From the time I was a little girl, if my sisters work their hair braided, I wouldn't wear mine braided...If they wore ribbons, I wouldn't."


Kappa Delta Group Photograph, Chatham Episcopal School, Chatham, Virginia, circa 1903-4
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Family of Judith Maury Tice, RC-2005-001-002
————————-
The girls there all thought I was pretty strange, and I thought they were pretty strange.
—Georgia O’Keeffe on Chatham Episcopal School
O’Keeffe’s preference for an austere personal style was apparent even at a young age. In this group portrait, where she is the third from the right, she stands out for her restraint: her white dress has the snuggest sleeves and cuffs, and instead of pushing her hair into a high pompadour with a big floppy bow, like her peers, she pulled her hair straight back into a long pigtail that ended in a modest bow.
She liked to use her dress to proclaim her independence, recalling: “From the time I was a little girl, if my sisters work their hair braided, I wouldn’t wear mine braided…If they wore ribbons, I wouldn’t.”

O'Keeffe's high school yearbook, illustrated by her drawings, described her as independent, without the hallmarks of traditional femininity: "A girl who would be different in habit, style and dress. A girl who doesn't give a cent for men and boys still less."

O’Keeffe’s high school yearbook, illustrated by her drawings, described her as independent, without the hallmarks of traditional femininity: “A girl who would be different in habit, style and dress. A girl who doesn’t give a cent for men and boys still less.”

Georgia O'Keeffe, Faculty Portrait Le Mirage yearbook, West Texas A & M University, 1907 Courtesy of the University Archives, Le Mirage Collection in the Cornette Library, West Texas, A&M University, Canyon, Texas --------------------------- During her time in Texas, O'Keeffe initiated what would become her signature look: all-black and all-white with minimal trim and clean, open necklines.

Georgia O’Keeffe, Faculty Portrait
Le Mirage yearbook, West Texas
A & M University, 1907
Courtesy of the University Archives, Le Mirage
Collection in the Cornette Library, West Texas, A&M University, Canyon, Texas
—————————
During her time in Texas, O’Keeffe initiated what would become her signature look: all-black and all-white with minimal trim and clean, open necklines.

Georgia O'Keeffe in Texas, circa 1916-17 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0730 ---------------------------- The garment in this photo may be the deep-pocketed "green coat" O'Keeffe wrote about in letter from Texas. Cut as if double-breasted, without a break down the center, the coat wraps diagonally around her, giving her body the elemental shape of a tree or a column. Her soft hat, following the contours of her head, helped draw the parts of her body into a continuous silhouette. Wrapping herself in a coat, robe, or dress became a trademark. Georgia O'Keeffe in Canyon, Texas, circa 1916-17 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0724 ------------------------------ Oh, she wore black. Black, black, black. And her clothing was all like men's clothing. Straight lines, she didn't believe in lace, or jabots in blouses, laces or ruffles or things like that. —A student of O'Keeffe's in Canyon, Texas O'Keeffe posed in an unusual location for this image: on the second-floor rooftop outside the open window of her rented room. Perhaps she wanted a snapshot that showed off this black dress, which may be the one she described as having asked a local dressmaker to make for her using material she purchased. In her twenties at the time, she was dressing in all-black with touches of white trim and adopting looser styles that did not require a corset. Her style was considered so audacious that locals, like her student quoted above, gossiped about it. The idea of eliminating corsets was promoted by radical dress reformers like Charlotte Perkins Gilman, who claimed that a traditional woman's dress was "as idiotic as a snug rubber band around a pair of shears." Gilman's writings confirmed and inspired O'Keeffe's own sartorial codes.

Georgia O’Keeffe in Texas, circa 1916-17
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0730
—————————-
The garment in this photo may be the deep-pocketed “green coat” O’Keeffe wrote about in letter from Texas. Cut as if double-breasted, without a break down the center, the coat wraps diagonally around her, giving her body the elemental shape of a tree or a column. Her soft hat, following the contours of her head, helped draw the parts of her body into a continuous silhouette. Wrapping herself in a coat, robe, or dress became a trademark.
Georgia O’Keeffe in Canyon, Texas, circa 1916-17
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0724
——————————
Oh, she wore black. Black, black, black. And her clothing was all like men’s clothing. Straight lines, she didn’t believe in lace, or jabots in blouses, laces or ruffles or things like that.
—A student of O’Keeffe’s in Canyon, Texas
O’Keeffe posed in an unusual location for this image: on the second-floor rooftop outside the open window of her rented room. Perhaps she wanted a snapshot that showed off this black dress, which may be the one she described as having asked a local dressmaker to make for her using material she purchased. In her twenties at the time, she was dressing in all-black with touches of white trim and adopting looser styles that did not require a corset. Her style was considered so audacious that locals, like her student quoted above, gossiped about it.
The idea of eliminating corsets was promoted by radical dress reformers like Charlotte Perkins Gilman, who claimed that a traditional woman’s dress was “as idiotic as a snug rubber band around a pair of shears.” Gilman’s writings confirmed and inspired O’Keeffe’s own sartorial codes.

 

Georgia O'Keeffe Untitled (Fashion Design), circa 1912-14 Watercolor and graphite on medium thick, brown, slightly textured wove paper, illustration board Private collection.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Untitled (Fashion Design), circa 1912-14
Watercolor and graphite on medium thick, brown, slightly textured wove paper, illustration board
Private collection.

Georgia O'Keeffe Woman with Blue Hat, circa 1916-17 Watercolor, gouache, and graphite on paper Collection of Thomas H. Lee and Ann Tenenbaum, New York -------------------------- O'Keeffe may have created this and the other watercolor nearby of stylish women against decorative backgrounds for classroom use. Both works demonstrate the application of flat, stylized design to fashion illustration. In this same period, the magazine Vanity Fair published similar stylized illustrations by O'Keeffe, who was searching for additional ways to turn her art skills into income. Georgia O'Keeffe, "After the ball is over, the New York debutante retires to her midenly couch," Vanity Fair, November 1916, p. 41.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Woman with Blue Hat, circa 1916-17
Watercolor, gouache, and graphite on paper
Collection of Thomas H. Lee and Ann Tenenbaum, New York
————————–
O’Keeffe may have created this and the other watercolor nearby of stylish women against decorative backgrounds for classroom use. Both works demonstrate the application of flat, stylized design to fashion illustration. In this same period, the magazine Vanity Fair published similar stylized illustrations by O’Keeffe, who was searching for additional ways to turn her art skills into income.
Georgia O’Keeffe, “After the ball is over, the New York debutante retires to her midenly couch,” Vanity Fair, November 1916, p. 41.

 

Georgia O'Keeffe Abstraction, 1916 (cast 1979=80), 7/10 White-lacquered bronze Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation, 1997.06.07 ------------------------------ O'Keeffe made this sculpture the year she lost her mother. Its arching shape could be a figure in mourning—she suggested it was like a nun bowing her head. It also evokes the form of a growing plant pushing up through the earth, its leaves not yet unfurled. This is the ambiguity of her early style, where her references are not fixed by continually shift from the human to the plant world.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Abstraction, 1916 (cast 1979-80), 7/10
White-lacquered bronze
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation, 1997.06.07
——————————
O’Keeffe made this sculpture the year she lost her mother. Its arching shape could be a figure in mourning—she suggested it was like a nun bowing her head. It also evokes the form of a growing plant pushing up through the earth, its leaves not yet unfurled. This is the ambiguity of her early style, where her references are not fixed but continually shift from the human to the plant world.

Georgia O'Keeffe Blue #1, 1916 Watercolor and graphite on paper Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.73 Georgia O'Keeffe Blue #2, 1916 Watercolor on paper Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.74 Blue #3, 1916 Watercolor on paper Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.75 Blue #4, 1916 Watercolor on paper Brooklyn Museum; Dick S. Ramsay Fund, 58.76 -------------------------------- In her early abstractions, O'Keeffe rendered the same soft, flowing organic forms as she did in her dress. Her rounded forms also have a kinship with the plant-form vocabularies popularized by the international Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau movements. When Alfred Stieglitz saw her first abstractions, he is famously said to have exclaimed, "Finally, a woman on paper," and in 1916 and again in 1917, he hung some of them in his gallery at 291 Fifth Avenue.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Blue #1, 1916
Watercolor and graphite on paper
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.73
Georgia O’Keeffe
Blue #2, 1916
Watercolor on paper
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.74
Blue #3, 1916
Watercolor on paper
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary T. Cockcroft, by exchange, 58.75
Blue #4, 1916
Watercolor on paper
Brooklyn Museum; Dick S. Ramsay Fund, 58.76
——————————–
In her early abstractions, O’Keeffe rendered the same soft, flowing organic forms as she did in her dress. Her rounded forms also have a kinship with the plant-form vocabularies popularized by the international Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau movements. When Alfred Stieglitz saw her first abstractions, he is famously said to have exclaimed, “Finally, a woman on paper,” and in 1916 and again in 1917, he hung some of them in his gallery at 291 Fifth Avenue.

Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly, October 1916 Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections ------------------------------ Alfred Stieglitz included several of O'Keeffe's charcoal abstractions in a small group show at his 291 gallery in 1916, and wrote about them in the October issue of his art publication, Camera Work. In his brief comments he describes them as having attracted great interest "from a psycho-analytical point of view," stating that "291" (meaning Stieglitz himself) had "never before seen a woman express herself so frankly on paper." He also published a critique by a fellow artist that refers to her works' "feminine forms," along with a letter to the gallery expressing, in erotically charged language, an appreciation for the "woman pictures." Stieglitz championed O'Keeffe as a great modern artist, but he insisted that her work be read through a Freudian lens, as revelations of her sexuality, a point of view that shaped the discourse surrounding her work during his lifetime.

Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly, October 1916
Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections
——————————
Alfred Stieglitz included several of O’Keeffe’s charcoal abstractions in a small group show at his 291 gallery in 1916, and wrote about them in the October issue of his art publication, Camera Work. In his brief comments he describes them as having attracted great interest “from a psycho-analytical point of view,” stating that “291” (meaning Stieglitz himself) had “never before seen a woman express herself so frankly on paper.” He also published a critique by a fellow artist that refers to her works’ “feminine forms,” along with a letter to the gallery expressing, in erotically charged language, an appreciation for the “woman pictures.” Stieglitz championed O’Keeffe as a great modern artist, but he insisted that her work be read through a Freudian lens, as revelations of her sexuality, a point of view that shaped the discourse surrounding her work during his lifetime.

O'Keeffe was an accomplished seamstress and made her own clothes early in her life. Because of their fine details and high-quality construction, it seems reasonable to assume that she made the group of silk ensembles on view here. She kept, stored, and moved these early garments from one home to the next for over half a century, preserving them most likely because they carried memories not only of her first years with Stieglitz but also of her considerable labors and artistry in crafting them.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Dress and Bolero Jacket, circa 1920s
Cream silk
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe,
New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0619 and 2000.03.0620
——————————–
Made of a mid-weight glossy silk, this sleeveless dress has a deep V in the back, and a matching unstructured bolero jacket with a scarf collar. The outfit is almost entirely hand-sewn, with a few machine-made seams. The artist may have worn this ensemble for dinner or eveningwear.
O’Keeffe was an accomplished seamstress and made her own clothes early in her life. Because of their fine details and high-quality construction, it seems reasonable to assume that she made the group of silk ensembles on view here. She kept, stored, and moved these early garments from one home to the next for over half a century, preserving them most likely because they carried memories not only of her first years with Stieglitz but also of her considerable labors and artistry in crafting them.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Dress and Jacket, circa 1937-38 Ivory silk crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0196 and 2000.03.0237 ----------------------------------- This two-piece outfit is a fine example of O'Keeffe's skills as a seamstress and a designer. Its ingenuous design allowed her to put the dress on over her head, eliminating and need for buttons, belts, or zippers. The jacket also lacked buttons or closures, and was designed to lie smoothly under or over the draping collar of the dress. Most likely this garment began as a longer dress, which the artist shortened in the 1940s when hemlines lifted.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Dress and Jacket, circa 1937-38
Ivory silk crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0196 and 2000.03.0237
———————————–
This two-piece outfit is a fine example of O’Keeffe’s skills as a seamstress and a designer. Its ingenuous design allowed her to put the dress on over her head, eliminating and need for buttons, belts, or zippers. The jacket also lacked buttons or closures, and was designed to lie smoothly under or over the draping collar of the dress.
Most likely this garment began as a longer dress, which the artist shortened in the 1940s when hemlines lifted.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Tunic, circa 1920s Cream silk crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2006.7.1648 --------------------------------- O'Keeffe would have worn this columnar tunic over a matching slip or unde4rdress that does not survive. Falling below the knee and without a defined waist, it is as close as she came to the waistless, loose fitting "flapper" styles of the era. Its slim sleeves are finished with small mother-of-pearl buttons, a type she favored for white garments.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Tunic, circa 1920s
Cream silk crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2006.7.1648
———————————
O’Keeffe would have worn this columnar tunic over a matching slip or unde4rdress that does not survive. Falling below the knee and without a defined waist, it is as close as she came to the waistless, loose fitting “flapper” styles of the era. Its slim sleeves are finished with small mother-of-pearl buttons, a type she favored for white garments.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Dress (Tunic and Underdress), crica 1926 Ivory silk crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0235 and 2000.03.0236 ---------------------------------- Tunics worn over an underdress of the same fabric were popular in both fashion and "art dress" in the 1920s, especially among artists and habitues of Greenwich Village. They conformed to O'Keeffe's desire for ease of movement and offer further evidence of the ways she distilled and personalized current fashions. Peasant sleeves inspired by traditional Russian Balkan vernancular dress were also popular 1920s fashions. The elemental simplicity and monochromatic purity of O'Keeffe's tunic stands out when compared to the more elaborate design worn by her good friend the painter Florine Stettheimer.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Dress (Tunic and Underdress), crica 1926
Ivory silk crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0235 and 2000.03.0236
———————————-
Tunics worn over an underdress of the same fabric were popular in both fashion and “art dress” in the 1920s, especially among artists and habitues of Greenwich Village. They conformed to O’Keeffe’s desire for ease of movement and offer further evidence of the ways she distilled and personalized current fashions. Peasant sleeves inspired by traditional Russian Balkan vernacular dress were also popular 1920s fashions. The elemental simplicity and monochromatic purity of O’Keeffe’s tunic stands out when compared to the more elaborate design worn by her good friend the painter Florine Stettheimer.

Gaston Lachaise American, born France, 1882-1935 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1925-27 Alabaster The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949, 49.92.4 ----------------------------- Sculptor Gaston Lachaise often made portraits of his fellow modern artists, carving this regal one of O'Keeffe in alabaster. He captured her hallmarks : a stately profile, an unadorned face, and a cool, detached air. When Stieglitz displayed the bust in a show at his Intimate Gallery in 1927, the writer Louis Kalonyme drew connections between the bust and O'Keeffe's body and art: You see in her noble white face, framed as it is by her black hair and set off by the black garments she almost always wears, the same radiance perceived by Gaston Lachaise. In his sculpture portrait of O'Keeffe your eyes follow a head rising like a white sun, whose flaming tranquility is fed by that same beauty which is communicated by O'Keeffe through those marvelous flowers she paints. You see too in the features of that sculpted face, its poised, affirmative lines, the sources of that beauty. O'Keeffe and Stieglitz owned this portrait, and she bequeathed it to the Metropolitan Museum as part of a much larger gift in 1949.

Gaston Lachaise
American, born France, 1882-1935
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1925-27
Alabaster
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949, 49.92.4
—————————–
Sculptor Gaston Lachaise often made portraits of his fellow modern artists, carving this regal one of O’Keeffe in alabaster. He captured her hallmarks : a stately profile, an unadorned face, and a cool, detached air.
When Stieglitz displayed the bust in a show at his Intimate Gallery in 1927, the writer Louis Kalonyme drew connections between the bust and O’Keeffe’s body and art:
You see in her noble white face, framed as it is by her black hair and set off by the black garments she almost always wears, the same radiance perceived by Gaston Lachaise. In his sculpture portrait of O’Keeffe your eyes follow a head rising like a white sun, whose flaming tranquility is fed by that same beauty which is communicated by O’Keeffe through those marvelous flowers she paints. You see too in the features of that sculpted face, its poised, affirmative lines, the sources of that beauty.
O’Keeffe and Stieglitz owned this portrait, and she bequeathed it to the Metropolitan Museum as part of a much larger gift in 1949.

Georgia O'Keeffe East River No. 1, 1926 Oil on linen Wichita Art Museum, Wichita, Kansas; Museum Purchase, Friends of the Wichita Art Museum, Inc., Volunteer Alliance, 1977-1979, 1979.35 ---------------------------- In the fall of 1924, O'Keeffe and Stieglitz moved into the brand new Shelton Hotel, an Art Deco residential skyscraper at 35 East 58th Street. Over the coming decade they had a number of different apartments, preferring the higher floors. O'Keeffe used their living quarters as her studios, and became enamored of the view from her windows: I had never lived so high up before and was so exicted that I began talking about trying to paint New York. Of course, I was told it was an impossible idea—even the men hadn't done too well with it. From my teens on I had been told that I had crazy notions so I was accustomed to disagreement and went on with my idea of painting New York. Her cityscapes surprised everyone, including Stieglitz and the critics familiar with her as a painter of flowers and shells. She ordered custom-sized canvases for her new subjects: tall verticals for skyscrapers and long horizontal ones for panoramic views, such as this one looking out toward the East River.

Georgia O’Keeffe
East River No. 1, 1926
Oil on linen
Wichita Art Museum, Wichita, Kansas; Museum Purchase, Friends of the Wichita Art Museum, Inc., Volunteer Alliance, 1977-1979, 1979.35
—————————-
In the fall of 1924, O’Keeffe and Stieglitz moved into the brand new Shelton Hotel, an Art Deco residential skyscraper at 35 East 58th Street. Over the coming decade they had a number of different apartments, preferring the higher floors. O’Keeffe used their living quarters as her studios, and became enamored of the view from her windows:
I had never lived so high up before and was so exicted that I began talking about trying to paint New York. Of course, I was told it was an impossible idea—even the men hadn’t done too well with it. From my teens on I had been told that I had crazy notions so I was accustomed to disagreement and went on with my idea of painting New York.
Her cityscapes surprised everyone, including Stieglitz and the critics familiar with her as a painter of flowers and shells. She ordered custom-sized canvases for her new subjects: tall verticals for skyscrapers and long horizontal ones for panoramic views, such as this one looking out toward the East River.

New York

When O’Keeffe moved to New York in 1918, she began an intimate partnership with Stieglitz; they lived together for six years before marrying in 1924. Stieglitz was twenty-three years older than O’Keeffe and had considerable experience launching American artists’ careers. Beginning in 1923, he organized exhibitions and showcased her work on a nearly annual basis, building her career. He also organized her first museum exhibition, here at the Brooklyn Museum in 1927. It was in these early years of their relationship that he embarked on his epic photographic portrait series of her. Showing her in predominantly black and white garments and closefitting hats, these images, when exhibited and published, created the artist’s public persona as an audacious, modern woman.

O’Keeffe likely made most of her clothes in these early years, just as she had as a teacher. She favored silks, cottons, and wools and a two-color palette of white and black. Her designs featured strong silhouettes and little or no ornamentation. She took pride in her handiwork, as she preserved some of her early garments for well over sixty years.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe at 291, 1917 Platinum print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.01.001 --------------------------- From 1917 to 1937, in a project unprecedented in the history of modern photography, Stieglitz made some 330 images of O'Keeffe, a series he referred to as an ongoing portrait. She later said: Stieglitz photographed me first at his gallery "291" in the spring of 1917. I had gone all the way from Texas by train just to be there for three days and see the second show of my drawings and watercolors. I was teaching at the West Texas Normal School. A few weeks after I returned to Texas, photographs of me came—two portraits of my face against one of my large watercolors and three photographs of my hands. In my excitement at such pictures of myself I took them to school and held them up for my class to see. They were surprised and astonished too. Nothing like that had ever come into our world before.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe at 291, 1917
Platinum print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.01.001
—————————
From 1917 to 1937, in a project unprecedented in the history of modern photography, Stieglitz made some 330 images of O’Keeffe, a series he referred to as an ongoing portrait.
She later said:
Stieglitz photographed me first at his gallery “291” in the spring of 1917. I had gone all the way from Texas by train just to be there for three days and see the second show of my drawings and watercolors. I was teaching at the West Texas Normal School. A few weeks after I returned to Texas, photographs of me came—two portraits of my face against one of my large watercolors and three photographs of my hands. In my excitement at such pictures of myself I took them to school and held them up for my class to see. They were surprised and astonished too. Nothing like that had ever come into our world before.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1918 Palladium print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.10 Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1919-21 Platinum print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.58 ---------------------------------- Stieglitz photographed O'Keeffe as a whole figure and as isolated body parts, and sometimes nude, especially during the first years of their partnership. His highly gendered gaze corresponded to the turn-of-the-century idea that women had "many faces." In keeping with his promotion of her as a "woman artist" whose paintings expressed her innate feminity, his photographs sometimes integrated her face and shoulders into the rounded forms in her art, as if her style as a painter were an extension of her female anatomy.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1918
Palladium print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.10
Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1919-21
Platinum print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.58
———————————-
Stieglitz photographed O’Keeffe as a whole figure and as isolated body parts, and sometimes nude, especially during the first years of their partnership. His highly gendered gaze corresponded to the turn-of-the-century idea that women had “many faces.” In keeping with his promotion of her as a “woman artist” whose paintings expressed her innate femininity, his photographs sometimes integrated her face and shoulders into the rounded forms in her art, as if her style as a painter were an extension of her female anatomy.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1924 Palladium print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.24 ---------------------------------- Sensitive to O'Keeffe's austerity and discipline in dress, Stieglitz made photographs that emphasized the way her clothing crossed gender lines to be neither make nor female, or both. Sometimes she covered her head with a hood or a hat, lending an acclesiastical or sphinx-like quality to her appearance. Appearing grave and emotionally remote, with a contemplative bearing, became a canonical pose she would repeat for photographers the rest of her life.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1924
Palladium print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.24
———————————-
Sensitive to O’Keeffe’s austerity and discipline in dress, Stieglitz made photographs that emphasized the way her clothing crossed gender lines to be neither make nor female, or both. Sometimes she covered her head with a hood or a hat, lending an ecclesiastical or sphinx-like quality to her appearance. Appearing grave and emotionally remote, with a contemplative bearing, became a canonical pose she would repeat for photographers the rest of her life.

Two Pink Shells/Pink Shell, 1937 Oik on canvas Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 1997.04.06

Two Pink Shells/Pink Shell, 1937
Oil on canvas
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico;
Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 1997.04.06

Georgia O'Keeffe Clam and Mussel, 1925 Oil on canvases Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.107

Georgia O’Keeffe
Clam and Mussel, 1925
Oil on canvases
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico;
Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.107

Georgia O'Keeffe Jack in the Pulpit No. 3, 1930 Oil on canvas National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1987.58.2 O'Keeffe is popularly known for her large-scale paintings of flowers from the 1920s and 1930s. Flowers as a theme were considered a "feminine" subject in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, but no one had ever painted them like her: magnified, lushly colored, and botanically detailed. As soon as she began to exhibit such imagery, both male and female critics—following theories promoted by Stieglitz himself—interpreted her art as having strong sexual and anatomical connotations, claiming her images were expressions of an essential and uniquely feminine artistic sensibility. O'Keeffe spent years denying these eroticized readings of her paintings as well as the qualification of her identity as an artist with the word woman. In an interview in the 1960s, she offered a different account of how she came to paint her big flowers: In the twenties, huge buildings seemed to be going up overnight in New York. At that time I saw a painting by Fantin-Latour, a still life of flowers I found very beautiful, but I realized were I to paint the flowers so small, no one would look at them because I was unknown. So I thought i'll make them look big like the huge buildings going up. People will be startled; they'll have to look at them—and they did.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Jack in the Pulpit No. 3, 1930
Oil on canvas
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1987.58.2
O’Keeffe is popularly known for her large-scale paintings of flowers from the 1920s and 1930s. Flowers as a theme were considered a “feminine” subject in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, but no one had ever painted them like her: magnified, lushly colored, and botanically detailed.
As soon as she began to exhibit such imagery, both male and female critics—following theories promoted by Stieglitz himself—interpreted her art as having strong sexual and anatomical connotations, claiming her images were expressions of an essential and uniquely feminine artistic sensibility. O’Keeffe spent years denying these eroticized readings of her paintings as well as the qualification of her identity as an artist with the word woman. In an interview in the 1960s, she offered a different account of how she came to paint her big flowers:
In the twenties, huge buildings seemed to be going up overnight in New York. At that time I saw a painting by Fantin-Latour, a still life of flowers I found very beautiful, but I realized were I to paint the flowers so small, no one would look at them because I was unknown. So I thought i’ll make them look big like the huge buildings going up. People will be startled; they’ll have to look at them—and they did.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1918 Gelatin silver print National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation in honor of Georgia O'Keeffe and on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the National Gallery of Art, 1990.117.1

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1918
Gelatin silver print
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation in honor of Georgia O’Keeffe and on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the National Gallery of Art, 1990.117.1

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe with Matisse Sculpture, 1921 Palladium print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.64 -------------------------------- In this portrait and the one nearby, O'Keeffe wears loose clothing similar to the four white outfits seen in this gallery. Here, she holds a bronze sculpture by Henri Matisse of a female nude from 1906 that Stieglitz owned, having exhibited it at his 291 gallery in 1912 in the first American exhibition devoted to that artist's sculptures. The curl of O'Keeffe's fingers echoes and enhances the sculpture's protruding breasts and arms.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe with Matisse Sculpture, 1921
Palladium print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.64
——————————–
In this portrait and the one nearby, O’Keeffe wears loose clothing similar to the four white outfits seen in this gallery. Here, she holds a bronze sculpture by Henri Matisse of a female nude from 1906 that Stieglitz owned, having exhibited it at his 291 gallery in 1912 in the first American exhibition devoted to that artist’s sculptures. The curl of O’Keeffe’s fingers echoes and enhances the sculpture’s protruding breasts and arms.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe with Matisse Sculpture, 1921 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.63 ----------------------------- O;Keeffe's accessories included a variety of hats. In this photograph taken at Lake George, she wears what appears to be a taffeta hat with its brim folded up. She may have sewn this one herself as it includes the rows of pintucks she favored to shape garments and give them texture.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, circa 1920
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York;
Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.63
—————————–
O’Keeffe’s accessories included a variety of hats. In this photograph taken at Lake George, she wears what appears to be a taffeta hat with its brim folded up. She may have sewn this one herself as it includes the rows of pintucks she favored to shape garments and give them texture.

Georgia O'Keeffe Autumn Leaves—Lake George, NY, 1924 Oil on canvas Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, Ohio; Museum Purchase, Howald Fund II, 1961.009

Georgia O’Keeffe
Autumn Leaves—Lake George, NY, 1924
Oil on canvas
Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, Ohio;
Museum Purchase, Howald Fund II, 1961.009

Georgia O'Keeffe Pool in the Woods, Lake George, 1922 Pastel on paper Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Gift of Barbara B. Millhouse in memory of E. Carter, Nancy Susan Reynolds, and Winifred Babcock, 1984.2.9 ------------------------------- Of all the painters in the circle around Stieglitz, O'Keeffe experimented the most with color. She customarily began a composition with the hues naturally associated with a motif and then intensified them to suit her expressive purposes. When she painted the mountains and lake at Lake George, for instance, greens, dark blues, and browns dominated her palette. Painting the lake at night, she mixed a dark midnight blue. When the leaves turned in autimn, she exercised two of her most beloved colors, red and yellow. In New York City, when she painted what she saw out her windows, she worked with atmopheric grays and blues, or blacks for nocturnal views.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Pool in the Woods, Lake George, 1922
Pastel on paper
Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Gift of Barbara B. Millhouse in memory of E. Carter, Nancy Susan Reynolds, and Winifred Babcock, 1984.2.9
——————————-
Of all the painters in the circle around Stieglitz, O’Keeffe experimented the most with color. She customarily began a composition with the hues naturally associated with a motif and then intensified them to suit her expressive purposes. When she painted the mountains and lake at Lake George, for instance, greens, dark blues, and browns dominated her palette. Painting the lake at night, she mixed a dark midnight blue. When the leaves turned in autumn, she exercised two of her most beloved colors, red and yellow. In New York City, when she painted what she saw out her windows, she worked with atmospheric grays and blues, or blacks for nocturnal views.

Georgia O'Keeffe Shell and Old Shingle No. III, 1926 Oil on canvas Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Alfred Stieglitz Collection—Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1987.536

Georgia O’Keeffe
Shell and Old Shingle No. III, 1926
Oil on canvas
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Alfred Stieglitz Collection—Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1987.536

Georgia O'Keeffe Shell and Old Shingle IV, 1926 Oil on canvas Saint Louis Art Museum, Saint Louis, Missouri; Gift of Charles E. Claggett in memory of Blanche Fischl Claggett, 345:1980 ------------------------------- These two shell and shingle paintings, made in Lake George, New York, are part of an important series in which O'Keeffe explored the relationship between realism and abstraction. She wrote about her inspiration and the process of working on these canvases in her 1976 book, Georgia O'Keeffe: We were shingling the barn and the old shingles, taken off, were free to fly around. Absentmindedly I picked up a loose one and carried it into the house and up to the table in my room. On the table was a white clam shell brought from Maine in the spring. I had been painting it and it still lay there. The white shape of the shell and the grey shape of the weathered shingle were beautiful against the pale grey leaf on the faintly pink-lined pattern of the wallpaper. Adding the shingle got me painting again. After the first realistic paintings I painted just a piece of the shingle and a piece of the shell. To a couple were added quite large green leaves that were in a glass on the table. Finally I went back to the shingle and shell—large again—the shingle just a dark space that floated off the top of the painting, the shell just a simple white shape under it. They fascinated me so that I forgot what they were except that they were shapes together—singing shapes.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Shell and Old Shingle IV, 1926
Oil on canvas
Saint Louis Art Museum, Saint Louis, Missouri; Gift of Charles E. Claggett in memory of Blanche Fischl Claggett, 345:1980
——————————-
These two shell and shingle paintings, made in Lake George, New York, are part of an important series in which O’Keeffe explored the relationship between realism and abstraction. She wrote about her inspiration and the process of working on these canvases in her 1976 book, Georgia O’Keeffe:
We were shingling the barn and the old shingles, taken off, were free to fly around. Absentmindedly I picked up a loose one and carried it into the house and up to the table in my room. On the table was a white clam shell brought from Maine in the spring. I had been painting it and it still lay there. The white shape of the shell and the grey shape of the weathered shingle were beautiful against the pale grey leaf on the faintly pink-lined pattern of the wallpaper. Adding the shingle got me painting again. After the first realistic paintings I painted just a piece of the shingle and a piece of the shell. To a couple were added quite large green leaves that were in a glass on the table. Finally I went back to the shingle and shell—large again—the shingle just a dark space that floated off the top of the painting, the shell just a simple white shape under it. They fascinated me so that I forgot what they were except that they were shapes together—singing shapes.

Georgia O'Keeffe Line and Curve, 1927 Oil on canvas National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Afred Stieglitz Collection, Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1987.58.6 ------------------------------- O'Keeffe enjoyed painting entire pictures in shades of black and white, the same restricted palette she used in dress. First in her absract drawings and watercolors in the 1910s, then in oil paintings of the 1920s, she made black and white into "colors" that were subtle and versatile. Sometimes she juxtaposed them; she also mixed the two and came up with a beautiful tonal range of grays. This narrow, vertical abstraction may have been informed by O'Keeffe's paintings of modern skyscrapers of Manhattan in the late 1920s.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Line and Curve, 1927
Oil on canvas
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Afred Stieglitz Collection, Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1987.58.6
——————————-
O’Keeffe enjoyed painting entire pictures in shades of black and white, the same restricted palette she used in dress. First in her absract drawings and watercolors in the 1910s, then in oil paintings of the 1920s, she made black and white into “colors” that were subtle and versatile. Sometimes she juxtaposed them; she also mixed the two and came up with a beautiful tonal range of grays. This narrow, vertical abstraction may have been informed by O’Keeffe’s paintings of modern skyscrapers of Manhattan in the late 1920s.

Typed letter from Alfred Stieglitz to Herbert B. Tschudy, curator at the Brooklyn Museum, May 25, 1927 Typed letter from Herbert B. Tschudy to Alfred Stieglitz, June 1, 1927 Brooklyn Museum Archives, Records of the Darpartment of Painting and Sculpture ---------------------------------- O'Keeffe had her very first museum exhibition, held here at the Brooklyn Museum, in 1927. These letters are part of a correspondence between Alfred Stieglitz, who largely organized the exhibition, and the Museum's curator of paintings, Herbert B. Tchudy. Her painting Black Pansy and Forget-Me-Nots (1926), seen nearby, was borrowed for the exhibition from a private collector, and at the conclusion of the show, O'Keeffe encouraged the leander to donate it to the Brooklyn Museum. It is one of the fourteen O'Keeffes in the collection; six of the works were bequeathed to the Museum by the artist herself.

Typed letter from Alfred Stieglitz to Herbert B. Tschudy, curator at the Brooklyn Museum, May 25, 1927
Typed letter from Herbert B. Tschudy to Alfred Stieglitz, June 1, 1927
Brooklyn Museum Archives, Records of the Darpartment of Painting and Sculpture
———————————-
O’Keeffe had her very first museum exhibition, held here at the Brooklyn Museum, in 1927. These letters are part of a correspondence between Alfred Stieglitz, who largely organized the exhibition, and the Museum’s curator of paintings, Herbert B. Tchudy. Her painting Black Pansy and Forget-Me-Nots (1926), seen nearby, was borrowed for the exhibition from a private collector, and at the conclusion of the show, O’Keeffe encouraged the lender to donate it to the Brooklyn Museum. It is one of the fourteen O’Keeffe’s in the collection; six of the works were bequeathed to the Museum by the artist herself.

International Exhibition of Modern Art; Arranged by the Societe Anonyme for the Brooklyn Museum, November-December 1926 Text by Katherine S. Dreier; composed by Katherine S. Dreier and Constantin Aladjalov ([Brooklyn:] Societe Anonyme, 1926) Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections. Gift of Katherine Dreier -------------------------------- O'Keeffe's art hung for the first time, alongside other women artists', at the Brooklyn Museum in 1926, in the Societe Anonyme's International Exhibition of Modern Art, the largest presentation of modern art in America since the Armory Show in 1913. The catalogue includes a portrait of O'Keeffe by Stieglitz.

International Exhibition of Modern Art; Arranged by the Societe Anonyme for the Brooklyn Museum, November-December 1926
Text by Katherine S. Dreier; composed by Katherine S. Dreier and Constantin Aladjalov ([Brooklyn:] Societe Anonyme, 1926)
Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections.
Gift of Katherine Dreier
——————————–
O’Keeffe’s art hung for the first time, alongside other women artists’, at the Brooklyn Museum in 1926, in the Societe Anonyme’s International Exhibition of Modern Art, the largest presentation of modern art in America since the Armory Show in 1913. The catalogue includes a portrait of O’Keeffe by Stieglitz.

Georgia O'Keeffe Black Pansy & Forget-Me-Nots (Pansy), 1926 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Gift of Mrs. Alfred S. Rossin, 28.521

Georgia O’Keeffe
Black Pansy & Forget-Me-Nots (Pansy), 1926
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Gift of Mrs. Alfred S. Rossin, 28.521

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Blouse, circa 1930s Ivory silk Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0256 ------------------------------- This machine-sewn, lightweight silk blouse is cut much like a man's short-sleeved shirt and is finished with several rows of decorative topstiching in the same color thread around the garment's edges. The mother-of-pear buttons, perhaps saved by the frugal O'Keeffe from other garments, are of two different designs, alternating down the front and creating a subtle pattern. She wears shirts similar to this one in several Stieglitz photographs taken at Lake George.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Blouse, circa 1930s
Ivory silk
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0256
——————————-
This machine-sewn, lightweight silk blouse is cut much like a man’s short-sleeved shirt and is finished with several rows of decorative topstitching in the same color thread around the garment’s edges. The mother-of-pear buttons, perhaps saved by the frugal O’Keeffe from other garments, are of two different designs, alternating down the front and creating a subtle pattern. She wears shirts similar to this one in several Stieglitz photographs taken at Lake George.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Blouse, circa 1930s White linen Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0250 ------------------------------- O'Keeffe used more decorative stitching than usual in this blouse. The bibbed front is framed with a small ruffle and decorated with tiny pintucks in a diagonal grid pattern. The panels on the front and sleeves were then edged with rows of open stitches, an embroidery technique often used in lacemaking. This lightened up the sleeves and allowed her skin tone to show through. The collar has ties to make a bow, a frequent feature in her blouses and dresses.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Blouse, circa 1930s
White linen
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0250
——————————-
O’Keeffe used more decorative stitching than usual in this blouse. The bibbed front is framed with a small ruffle and decorated with tiny pintucks in a diagonal grid pattern. The panels on the front and sleeves were then edged with rows of open stitches, an embroidery technique often used in lacemaking. This lightened up the sleeves and allowed her skin tone to show through. The collar has ties to make a bow, a frequent feature in her blouses and dresses.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Blouse, circa early to mid-1930s White linen Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0248 ------------------------------- The decoration at the center of this blouse recalls O'Keeffe's painting of crinkly-edged autumn leaves and corrugated seashells. The blouse and its ornament are shaped by tiny pintucks that look like the veins of a leaf. A conscientious mender of clothes she liked to wear, O'Keeffe meticulously patched the back of this blouse.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Blouse, circa early to mid-1930s
White linen
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0248
——————————-
The decoration at the center of this blouse recalls O’Keeffe’s painting of crinkly-edged autumn leaves and corrugated seashells. The blouse and its ornament are shaped by tiny pintucks that look like the veins of a leaf. A conscientious mender of clothes she liked to wear, O’Keeffe meticulously patched the back of this blouse.

Georgia O'Keeffe 2 Yellow Leaves (Yellow Leaves), 1928 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 87.136.6

Georgia O’Keeffe
2 Yellow Leaves (Yellow Leaves), 1928
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 87.136.6

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe—Hands and Thimble, 1919 Photomechanical print Stieglitz Memorial Portfolio, 1864-1946: Reproductions of 18 Photographs by Alfred Stieglitz; Tributes—In Memoriam Edited by Dorothy Norman (New York: Twice a Year Press, 1947) Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections. ------------------------ This photograph accompanied a brief article in the August 1946 issue of Harper's Bazaar by Anita Pollitzer, the person who first showed O'Keeffe's drawings to Alfred Stieglitz. In it, Pollitzer made this observation about her good friend: "Extremely industrious, her hands are seldom idle. She loves to sew—not fancy things, but the Chinese silk blouses and loose clothes that become her."

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe—Hands and Thimble, 1919
Photomechanical print
Stieglitz Memorial Portfolio, 1864-1946: Reproductions of 18 Photographs by Alfred Stieglitz; Tributes—In Memoriam
Edited by Dorothy Norman
(New York: Twice a Year Press, 1947)
Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections.
————————
This photograph accompanied a brief article in the August 1946 issue of Harper’s Bazaar by Anita Pollitzer, the person who first showed O’Keeffe’s drawings to Alfred Stieglitz. In it, Pollitzer made this observation about her good friend: “Extremely industrious, her hands are seldom idle. She loves to sew—not fancy things, but the Chinese silk blouses and loose clothes that become her.”Items from Georgia O’Keeffe’s Sewing
Basket Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.5.885a-b

Carl Van Vechten American, 1880-1964 Georgia O'Keeffe (June 9, 1935), 1935 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.147

Carl Van Vechten
American, 1880-1964
Georgia O’Keeffe (June 9, 1935), 1935
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.147

Georgia O'Keeffe (February 22, 1935), 1935 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.144 -------------------------------- Although Stieglitz had a virtual monopoly on photographing O'Keeffe during her New York years, Carl Van Vechten succeeded in making a few images of her, Van Vechten, a well-known novelist, critic, and tastemaker, made portraits of America's distinguished artists and writers in his New York studio. He typically posed sitters against a backdrop of patterned wallpaper of fabric he selected to correspond to some aspect of their work. He had O'Keeffe, a painter of oversize flowers, stand in front of floral patterns. He captured her from the front wearing a close-fitting cap and a bow at her neck. In another image, she turned her back to the camera so that he could record how carefully she braided the ends of her long hair and wrapped the plaits into a flat oval knot.

Georgia O’Keeffe (February 22, 1935), 1935
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.144
——————————–
Although Stieglitz had a virtual monopoly on photographing O’Keeffe during her New York years, Carl Van Vechten succeeded in making a few images of her, Van Vechten, a well-known novelist, critic, and tastemaker, made portraits of America’s distinguished artists and writers in his New York studio. He typically posed sitters against a backdrop of patterned wallpaper of fabric he selected to correspond to some aspect of their work. He had O’Keeffe, a painter of oversize flowers, stand in front of floral patterns. He captured her from the front wearing a close-fitting cap and a bow at her neck. In another image, she turned her back to the camera so that he could record how carefully she braided the ends of her long hair and wrapped the plaits into a flat oval knot.

Zoe de Salle American, born France, 1897-1990 Cape, circa late 1930s Black wool crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0349 ------------------------------- O'Keeffe likely purchased this cape in the late 1930s at Zoe de Salle's salon on East 53rd Street in New York City, close to where she and Stieglitz lived. Capes were the designer's trademark; according to one reporter, de Salle "cannot conceive of a woman's wardrobe without at least one of these easy-to-wear wraps." Fashion writers also praised de Salle's fabrics as the very best and her designs as "timeless," with a "monastic simplicity"—terms equally descriptive of O'Keeffe's own sartorial style.

Zoe de Salle
American, born France, 1897-1990
Cape, circa late 1930s
Black wool crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0349
——————————-
O’Keeffe likely purchased this cape in the late 1930s at Zoe de Salle’s salon on East 53rd Street in New York City, close to where she and Stieglitz lived. Capes were the designer’s trademark; according to one reporter, de Salle “cannot conceive of a woman’s wardrobe without at least one of these easy-to-wear wraps.” Fashion writers also praised de Salle’s fabrics as the very best and her designs as “timeless,” with a “monastic simplicity”—terms equally descriptive of O’Keeffe’s own sartorial style.

Attributed to Georgia O'Keeffe Dress with Matching Belt, circa 1930s Black wool crepe, and white silk Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.355a-b ----------------------------- O'Keeffe wore this black pleated dress with its matching cummerbund and loose "peasant" sleeves for many public occasions. Its design features a row of continuous vertical pleats, like the fluting of a column, that begin at the shoulder and end at the hemline. The pleats function much as the pintucks do in her blouses: as understated "stripes" that both shape and decorate the dress. O'Keeffe fashioned the dress so that it simulated a layered look, giving the neckline not one but two standup collars; a white silk one sewn inside the black wool one. Both collars have long ties that she would tie, tuck, or let flow loosely down her torso. Sewing white wristbands in the cuffs of the sleeves reinforced the illusion that she was wearing a white garment under a black one.

Attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe
Dress with Matching Belt, circa 1930s
Black wool crepe, and white silk
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.355a-b
—————————–
O’Keeffe wore this black pleated dress with its matching cummerbund and loose “peasant” sleeves for many public occasions. Its design features a row of continuous vertical pleats, like the fluting of a column, that begin at the shoulder and end at the hemline. The pleats function much as the pintucks do in her blouses: as understated “stripes” that both shape and decorate the dress. O’Keeffe fashioned the dress so that it simulated a layered look, giving the neckline not one but two standup collars; a white silk one sewn inside the black wool one. Both collars have long ties that she would tie, tuck, or let flow loosely down her torso. Sewing white wristbands in the cuffs of the sleeves reinforced the illusion that she was wearing a white garment under a black one.

Suit (Jacket, Skirt and Belt), circa 1939-40 Black silk taffeta Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.372 and 2000.3.375 ------------------------------ This loose-fitting suit from around 1940 is the oldest two-piece suit that remained in O'Keeffe's collection. It was likely custom-made for her as it has shoulder pads and weights in its hems, refinements not found in the clothes she made for herself. She could wear the jacket over a blouse or buttoned up to make a two-piece dress. Beginning in the 1960s, her suits would become more tailored and masculine in design.

Suit (Jacket, Skirt and Belt), circa 1939-40
Black silk taffeta
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.372 and 2000.3.375
——————————
This loose-fitting suit from around 1940 is the oldest two-piece suit that remained in O’Keeffe’s collection. It was likely custom-made for her as it has shoulder pads and weights in its hems, refinements not found in the clothes she made for herself. She could wear the jacket over a blouse or buttoned up to make a two-piece dress. Beginning in the 1960s, her suits would become more tailored and masculine in design.

Kimono-Style Coat, circa late 1920s—early 1930s Black rayon (?) and painted white silk crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0364 ---------------------------------- This one-of-a-kind evening coat—with painted silk lining, wide, kimono-like sleeves, and an appliqued satin ribbon motif reminiscent of Art Nouveau design—is handmade, though it is not clear who fashioned it. The coat wraps around the body, as do so many of O'Keeffe's garments, and is fastened by a sizeable mother-of-pearl button, her favorite button color and material. Through she did not mingle much with the artistic and literary women in Greenwich Village, this is the kind of highly personalized "art dress" they favored.

Kimono-Style Coat, circa late 1920s—early 1930s
Black rayon (?) and painted white silk crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0364
———————————-
This one-of-a-kind evening coat—with painted silk lining, wide, kimono-like sleeves, and an appliqued satin ribbon motif reminiscent of Art Nouveau design—is handmade, though it is not clear who fashioned it. The coat wraps around the body, as do so many of O’Keeffe’s garments, and is fastened by a sizeable mother-of-pearl button, her favorite button color and material. Through she did not mingle much with the artistic and literary women in Greenwich Village, this is the kind of highly personalized “art dress” they favored.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, circa 1930-31 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.57 ----------------------------- In the 1930s, O'Keeffe often tucked her braided hair under a close-fitting, knitted cap, extending the silhouette of her clothed body to the top of her head. This allowed Stieglitz to picture her neck and head as emerging from the deep V of her neckline, like the streamlined form of a sculpture by Constantin Brancusi. This photograph also captured two little details typical of her style; a tiny bow on an undergarment at the bottom of the V, and a row of pearl buttons at her wrist.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, circa 1930-31
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.57
—————————–
In the 1930s, O’Keeffe often tucked her braided hair under a close-fitting, knitted cap, extending the silhouette of her clothed body to the top of her head. This allowed Stieglitz to picture her neck and head as emerging from the deep V of her neckline, like the streamlined form of a sculpture by Constantin Brancusi. This photograph also captured two little details typical of her style; a tiny bow on an undergarment at the bottom of the V, and a row of pearl buttons at her wrist.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe,Prospect Mountain, Lake George, 1927 Gelatin silver print National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.223 ----------------------------- For this photograph, a casual and dandified O'Keeffe wore a dark sweater over a lighter vest and a white shirt with pointed collars. Stieglitz chose to capture his model from below, as he particularly liked to do when her costume was androgynous. Here her sweater, like a man's suit jacket, merges seamlessly with her straight black skirt. Her outfit conforms to the lessons of feminist Charlotte Perkins Gilman, who called upon modern women to emulate men and adopt suits as daily uniforms for work and comfort.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe,Prospect Mountain, Lake George, 1927
Gelatin silver print
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.;
Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.223
—————————–
For this photograph, a casual and dandified O’Keeffe wore a dark sweater over a lighter vest and a white shirt with pointed collars. Stieglitz chose to capture his model from below, as he particularly liked to do when her costume was androgynous. Here her sweater, like a man’s suit jacket, merges seamlessly with her straight black skirt. Her outfit conforms to the lessons of feminist Charlotte Perkins Gilman, who called upon modern women to emulate men and adopt suits as daily uniforms for work and comfort.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1928 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gieft of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.13 ----------------------------- O'Keeffe treated her head and body like a blank canvas—something to be beautifully covered in abstract shapes. When Stieglitz framed her dressed body in his camera, he used the strong silhouettes and interlocking shapes of her black and white wardrobe to his aethetic advantage, making his own abstractions of dark and light, cloth and flesh. One format he used repeatedly was to crop below her neckline, or just above her waist, positioning her head and upper torso against an empty sky, wall, or dark doorway. He universalized her by giving no sense of place.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1928
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gieft of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.13
—————————–
O’Keeffe treated her head and body like a blank canvas—something to be beautifully covered in abstract shapes. When Stieglitz framed her dressed body in his camera, he used the strong silhouettes and interlocking shapes of her black and white wardrobe to his aethetic advantage, making his own abstractions of dark and light, cloth and flesh. One format he used repeatedly was to crop below her neckline, or just above her waist, positioning her head and upper torso against an empty sky, wall, or dark doorway. He universalized her by giving no sense of place.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1932 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gieft of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.18 ----------------------------- A modernist in dress as well as art, O'Keeffe liked to wear white blouses partially covered with a black sweater to create defined blocks of light and dark.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1932
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gieft of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.18
—————————–
A modernist in dress as well as art, O’Keeffe liked to wear white blouses partially covered with a black sweater to create defined blocks of light and dark.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, probably 1919 Gelatin silver print National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.188 ----------------------------- O'Keeffe considered her neck and head as integral shapes in arranging her dress. She frequently used the necklines of her blouses as visual framing devices for her long neck, and headdresses or her neatly wound hair to bring closure to her sartorial composition. Here, Stieglitz rendered her long, unadorned neck and her head as a single unbroken plant-like form emerging from the hard-edged V of her black garment. She is regal and remote but also a satisfying abstract composition in black and white.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, probably 1919
Gelatin silver print
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.188
—————————–
O’Keeffe considered her neck and head as integral shapes in arranging her dress. She frequently used the necklines of her blouses as visual framing devices for her long neck, and headdresses or her neatly wound hair to bring closure to her sartorial composition. Here, Stieglitz rendered her long, unadorned neck and her head as a single unbroken plant-like form emerging from the hard-edged V of her black garment. She is regal and remote but also a satisfying abstract composition in black and white.

Georgia O'Keeffe Brooklyn Bridge, 1949 Oil on Masonite Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary Childs Draper, 77.11 -------------------------------- Just before moving to New Mexico permanently in 1949, O'Keeffe painted this farewell salute to New York, her home for thirty years. The Brooklyn Bridge was an iconic subject for her generation of modern artists, but she had never painted it before. She used the twin arches and harp-like cables of the bridge to create a valentine to the things she was leaving behind, saying goodbye to Stieglitz, their partnership, and the city where they launched their careers. This bridge is also a gateway, perhaps her metaphor for leaving the manmade city of stone and steel for the clear blue skies of New Mexico.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Brooklyn Bridge, 1949
Oil on Masonite
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Mary Childs Draper, 77.11
——————————–
Just before moving to New Mexico permanently in 1949, O’Keeffe painted this farewell salute to New York, her home for thirty years. The Brooklyn Bridge was an iconic subject for her generation of modern artists, but she had never painted it before. She used the twin arches and harp-like cables of the bridge to create a valentine to the things she was leaving behind, saying goodbye to Stieglitz, their partnership, and the city where they launched their careers. This bridge is also a gateway, perhaps her metaphor for leaving the manmade city of stone and steel for the clear blue skies of New Mexico.

Georgia O'Keeffe Manhattan, 1932 Oil on canvas Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; Gifts of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 1995.3.1 -------------------------------- In 1932, for an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, some sixty contemporary artists were commissioned to create designs for a large public mural. Each was asked to submit a small mock-up of a mural and then scale up one part of the design. O'Keeffe's mock-up was a triptych of modern New York cityscapes, claiming for herself a subject that had long been the provinance of male artists. This painting is her enlarged version of one piece of her overall design. It is a colorful composition of pink, mauve, red, black, and white skyscrapers, two wedges of blue sky, and, as her personal signature, three floating flowers.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Manhattan, 1932
Oil on canvas
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; Gifts of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 1995.3.1
——————————–
In 1932, for an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, some sixty contemporary artists were commissioned to create designs for a large public mural. Each was asked to submit a small mock-up of a mural and then scale up one part of the design. O’Keeffe’s mock-up was a triptych of modern New York cityscapes, claiming for herself a subject that had long been the provinance of male artists.
This painting is her enlarged version of one piece of her overall design. It is a colorful composition of pink, mauve, red, black, and white skyscrapers, two wedges of blue sky, and, as her personal signature, three floating flowers.

Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Georgia O'Keeffe at An American Place, 1946 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Twelve images of artist Georgia O'Keeffe, her husband photographer Alfred Stieglitz and Mercedes Acosta, 1946 Gelatin Silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ------------------------------ Stieglitz—who would die this same year—wore his signature cape and O'Keeffe one of her black wool pleated dresses for this photo session with Cecil Beaton, the well-known fashion photographer and portraitist of the rich and famous.

Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Georgia O’Keeffe at An American Place, 1946
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Twelve images of artist Georgia O’Keeffe, her husband photographer Alfred Stieglitz and Mercedes Acosta, 1946
Gelatin Silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
——————————
Stieglitz—who would die this same year—wore his signature cape and O’Keeffe one of her black wool pleated dresses for this photo session with Cecil Beaton, the well-known fashion photographer and portraitist of the rich and famous.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1930 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.17 ------------------------ This appears to be the first of the many times that O'Keeffe wore a black pleated dress in a photograph. The texture of cloth in this image, however, appears to be silk and the dress that survives, seen nearby, is in wool. O'Keeffe replicated pieces of clothing she liked and found comfortable. Her closets had many multiples of garments; an original, and then copies in different fabrics or colors.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1930
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.17
————————
This appears to be the first of the many times that O’Keeffe wore a black pleated dress in a photograph. The texture of cloth in this image, however, appears to be silk and the dress that survives, seen nearby, is in wool. O’Keeffe replicated pieces of clothing she liked and found comfortable. Her closets had many multiples of garments; an original, and then copies in different fabrics or colors.

Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Portrait of Painter Georgia O'Keeffe, 1946 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ------------------------------ Black remained a favorite color throughout O'Keeffe's life. Her reason was described in one article in 1929: "She wears black almost invariably—not, she saus, because she prefers it, but because, if she started picking out colors for dresses, she would have no time for painting." Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Georgia O'Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz at An American Place, 1946 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ------------------------------ Throughout her twenty-two year marriage to Stieglitz, O'Keeffe kept her own name, a rare choice in that era. As she explained in a 1968 interview: I had a hard time holding onto it but I wasn't going to give it up. Why should I take on someone else's famous name? So when people would say "Mrs. Stieglitz," I would say "Miss O'Keeffe."

Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Portrait of Painter Georgia O’Keeffe, 1946
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
——————————
Black remained a favorite color throughout O’Keeffe’s life. Her reason was described in one article in 1929: “She wears black almost invariably—not, she saus, because she prefers it, but because, if she started picking out colors for dresses, she would have no time for painting.”
Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz at An American Place, 1946
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
——————————
Throughout her twenty-two year marriage to Stieglitz, O’Keeffe kept her own name, a rare choice in that era. As she explained in a 1968 interview:
I had a hard time holding onto it but I wasn’t going to give it up. Why should I take on someone else’s famous name? So when people would say “Mrs. Stieglitz,” I would say “Miss O’Keeffe.”

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1920-22 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.6 ------------------------------- For this session, O'Keeffe wore a bowler-like black hat and wrapped herself in Stieglitz's cape, hiding its prominent buttons and collar. Stieglitz photographed her from a low vantage point, highlighting her audacity in dressing so that her gender was obscured or, one might say, appeared simultaneously male and female. Like other radical women in the 1920s, O'Keeffe experimented with gender-bending clothing, to challange and confound society's conventional sartorial codes for men and women.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1920-22
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.6
——————————-
For this session, O’Keeffe wore a bowler-like black hat and wrapped herself in Stieglitz’s cape, hiding its prominent buttons and collar. Stieglitz photographed her from a low vantage point, highlighting her audacity in dressing so that her gender was obscured or, one might say, appeared simultaneously male and female. Like other radical women in the 1920s, O’Keeffe experimented with gender-bending clothing, to challenge and confound society’s conventional sartorial codes for men and women.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1924 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.7

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1924
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2003.1.7

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe: A Portrait, 1918 Gelatin silver print Philadelphia Museum of Art; Purchased with the Lola Downin Peck Fund, 1978, 1978-91-1 -------------------------------- Following in the footsteps of artists such as James McNeill Whistler and Oscar Wilde, Stieglitz wore a full-length Loden cape with distinctive round buttons as his everyday "art dress." In their early years together, O'Keeffe liked to dress up in his cape for their photo sessions. He enjoyed posing her in ways that made the form of the cape appear as a solid pedestal supporting her head.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe: A Portrait, 1918
Gelatin silver print
Philadelphia Museum of Art; Purchased with the Lola Downin Peck Fund, 1978, 1978-91-1
——————————–
Following in the footsteps of artists such as James McNeill Whistler and Oscar Wilde, Stieglitz wore a full-length Loden cape with distinctive round buttons as his everyday “art dress.” In their early years together, O’Keeffe liked to dress up in his cape for their photo sessions. He enjoyed posing her in ways that made the form of the cape appear as a solid pedestal supporting her head.

Arnold Newman American, 1918-2006 Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe, 1944 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Harold Kaye, 1956, 56.578.13 ---------------------------- Arnold Newman's trademark was to pose sitters in ways that expressed their public reputations. By fusing the two artists' bodies into a single massing of black, Newman captured their interdependent partnership along with Stieglitz's definition of modern artists as spiritual brethren in an artistic order. The photograph was taken just two years before Stieglitz died. He stands in front of O'Keeffe holding a book as a cleric might hold a Bible. She sits behind him, her eyes downcast and her hands buried, a private and withdrawn partner, anchoring and steadying the union.

Arnold Newman
American, 1918-2006
Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O’Keeffe, 1944
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Harold Kaye, 1956, 56.578.13
—————————-
Arnold Newman’s trademark was to pose sitters in ways that expressed their public reputations. By fusing the two artists’ bodies into a single massing of black, Newman captured their interdependent partnership along with Stieglitz’s definition of modern artists as spiritual brethren in an artistic order.
The photograph was taken just two years before Stieglitz died. He stands in front of O’Keeffe holding a book as a cleric might hold a Bible. She sits behind him, her eyes downcast and her hands buried, a private and withdrawn partner, anchoring and steadying the union.

Georgia O'Keeffe Dark Tree Trunks, 1946 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 87.136.1 -------------------------------- The V-form is a recurring motif in O'Keeffe's art and in her wardrobe. In the direction of abstraction by cropping the tree forms abruptly at the canvas's edge, bringing focus to the V formed by the converging tree trunks. This V, painted in New Mexico a few months after Stieglitz's death, may also be endowed with personal meaning. The two sets of bare tree trunks, rooted to each other in the ground but grown apart, may be a subtle reference to her partnership with Stieglitz, frayed by the end of his life because of his attentions to another woman. This painting can be seen hanging in O'Keeffe's Ghost Ranch studio in the 1948 short film by Henwar Rodakiewicz, Land of Enchantment: Southeast, USA, on view nearby.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Dark Tree Trunks, 1946
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 87.136.1
——————————–
The V-form is a recurring motif in O’Keeffe’s art and in her wardrobe. In the direction of abstraction by cropping the tree forms abruptly at the canvas’s edge, bringing focus to the V formed by the converging tree trunks. This V, painted in New Mexico a few months after Stieglitz’s death, may also be endowed with personal meaning. The two sets of bare tree trunks, rooted to each other in the ground but grown apart, may be a subtle reference to her partnership with Stieglitz, frayed by the end of his life because of his attentions to another woman.
This painting can be seen hanging in O’Keeffe’s Ghost Ranch studio in the 1948 short film by Henwar Rodakiewicz, Land of Enchantment: Southeast, USA, on view nearby.

New Mexico

Ever since her days on the Texas Panhandle, O’Keeffe had harbored a deep affection for the big skies and openness of the American West. In 1929, craving a break from routine summers at Lake George, New York, with Stieglitz and his family, she and her artist friend Rebecca Strand took the train to New Mexico for a three-month stay at the Taos compound of arts patron Mabel Dodge Luhan. O’Keeffe felt so exhilarated and productive that she named northern New Mexico “my country” and determined to come back as often as possible to paint there. She began to spend late spring and summer in New Mexico, returning to Stieglitz and Lake George in the fall, when it was quiet enough for her to work. In winter, the couple went to their apartment in Manhattan, which O’Keeffe had sparingly decorated with animal bones and Navajo rugs from out West.

After Stieglitz died in 1946, she moved permanently to New Mexico, where she became a “regional modernist,” fusing the traditions and materials of the Southwest with her modern tastes. She acquired two homes in rural New Mexico, both conventional adobe structures that she modified by adding midcentury picture windows and designer furniture. In her art, she drew upon the new motifs and colors of her adopted landscape—bright blue skies, white animal bones, brown adobe, and pink and red stony cliffs—but painted them in her distinctive style of bold colors and abstract forms. While she continued to dress primarily in black and white for the camera, particularly for formal portraits, O’Keeffe became more casual in New Mexico, wearing denim and adding new colors to her wardrobe.

Arnold Newman American, 1918-2006 Georgia O'Keeffe, Ghost Ranch, N.M., 1968 Dye transfer on paper Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego -------------------------------- For a rare portrait of O'Keeffe in color, Arnold Newman moved the artist's white easel from the Ghost Ranch studio and placed it outside, so that its lines merged with the distant cliffs. She posed in profile against the easel with a skull centered over her head and the blue skies beyond. In 1946, when Newman photographed O'Keeffe together with Stieglitz in New York City, she wore her customary black. When Newman came to New Mexico twenty-two years later for this sitting, she wore denim, a fabric she wore casually around the house but not, except for this instance, for professional photographers. Perhaps Newman requested denim because he liked his photographs to relate to his sitter's reputation and popular identity, in this case, an imagined "cowgirl" of the Wild West.

Arnold Newman
American, 1918-2006
Georgia O’Keeffe, Ghost Ranch, N.M., 1968
Dye transfer on paper
Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego
——————————–
For a rare portrait of O’Keeffe in color, Arnold Newman moved the artist’s white easel from the Ghost Ranch studio and placed it outside, so that its lines merged with the distant cliffs. She posed in profile against the easel with a skull centered over her head and the blue skies beyond. In 1946, when Newman photographed O’Keeffe together with Stieglitz in New York City, she wore her customary black. When Newman came to New Mexico twenty-two years later for this sitting, she wore denim, a fabric she wore casually around the house but not, except for this instance, for professional photographers. Perhaps Newman requested denim because he liked his photographs to relate to his sitter’s reputation and popular identity, in this case, an imagined “cowgirl” of the Wild West.

Apron, 20th century Denim Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Hamilton, 2000.3.605 --------------------------------- This apron was probably bought off-the-rack, but O'Keeffe added the lower section using her own scraps of denim. Though she had kitchen help much of the time, she was a good cook. She used fruits and vegetables from her own gardens and prepared food as she dressed, simply with few adornments. Tai Chong & Company Chiangpao (Smock), circa 1950s-60s Blue cotton chambray Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.218 ----------------------------------- Given the scattered paint on it, this Chinese chiangpao (a man's traditional side buttoning summer robe) seems to have been used by O'Keeffe as a painter's smock.

Apron, 20th century
Denim
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Hamilton, 2000.3.605
———————————
This apron was probably bought off-the-rack, but O’Keeffe added the lower section using her own scraps of denim. Though she had kitchen help much of the time, she was a good cook. She used fruits and vegetables from her own gardens and prepared food as she dressed, simply with few adornments.
Tai Chong & Company
Chiangpao (Smock), circa 1950s-60s
Blue cotton chambray
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.218
———————————–
Given the scattered paint on it, this Chinese chiangpao (a man’s traditional side buttoning summer robe) seems to have been used by O’Keeffe as a painter’s smock.
Levi Strauss & Co.
Jeans, circa 1950s
Blue cotton denim
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0617
————————————-
Blue jeans were O’Keeffe’s first long-term commitment to any style of trousers and her first serious adoption of a color other than black or white in her wardrobe. Judging by photographs, her first heans had button flies and were either the men’s Levi’s “501” model or the “Lady Levi’s 701,” which appeared in 1934. When she died, the pairs of jeans in her drawers ranged from Western styles from the 1950s, like these, to flared and studded ones from the 1970s.
PF (Posture Foundation) Shoes by B. F. Goodrich
Sneakers, circa 1960s
Blue cotton, rubber soles
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0547a-b
—————————————
O’Keeffe was an early adopter of rubber-soled shoes and wore sneakers with her jeans in New Mexico.

1948 short film by Henwar Rodakiewicz, Land of Enchantment: Southeast, USA

Maria Chabot American, 1913-2001 Georgia O'Keeffe, Ghost Ranch, circa 1944 Photographic print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; gift of Maria Chabot, MS-OKAS-0213j --------------------------------- According to Vogue magazine in 1935, the Western "uniform" included "simple-but-severe blue jeans or Levi's turned up at the bottom once, laundered before wearing (to eliminate stiffness), cut straight and tight fitting, worn low on the hips, in the manner of your favorite dude wrangler. With these jeans go a simply tailored flannel or plaid cotton shirt...a Stetson hat; and a great free air of bravado." O'Keeffe assimilated the basics of the cowgirl look in New Mexico. But she remained true to her minimalist aesthetic by avoiding the extremes of "Western chic" that visitors often adopted for vacations at dude ranches: no fringe to her shirts, no spurs, no cowboy boots.

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe at Glen Canyon, 1961
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0996
———————————
When she visited Hong Kong and Taiwan, O’Keeffe bought ordinary off-the-rack pieces that working- and middle-class Chinese farmers and workers wore, especially pieces in blue cotton. Todd Webb photographed O’Keeffe on a camping trip wearing some of her imported goods; a farmer’s straw hat with a white scarf under it, and a blue cotton jacket with loops and ball buttons.

Georgia O'Keeffe, circa 1941 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.201

Georgia O’Keeffe, circa 1941
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.201

Tony Vaccaro American, born 1922 Georgia with Her Favorite Mountain, 1960 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.18 Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 Georgia O'Keeffe at Glen Canyon, 1961 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.1000 ---------------------------------------- In New Mexico, tying a scarf around her hair satisfied O'Keeffe's affection for creating a smooth, rounded head. It was also practical; it kept her hair from drying out and getting dirty in an arid region.

Tony Vaccaro
American, born 1922
Georgia with Her Favorite Mountain, 1960
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.18
Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe at Glen Canyon, 1961
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.1000
—————————————-
In New Mexico, tying a scarf around her hair satisfied O’Keeffe’s affection for creating a smooth, rounded head. It was also practical; it kept her hair from drying out and getting dirty in an arid region.

Afred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1932 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.69 ------------------------------ When O'Keeffe returned to Lake George at the end of a New Mexico summer, she left her jeans and denim shirts behind. There are no photographs by Stieglitz of her dressed in denim, a fabric, associated with men, labor, and roughing it in the West. Jeans were not yet commonly accepted dress for women in the East. She did, however, bring back some of her nearly acquired bandanas and scarfs—basic geometric patterns were her favorites—that she liked to wrap around her head and knot at the back. She also returned with cars she bought in New Mexico, first the Model-A Ford piectured in these two images and, in 1933, a Ford V-8 convertible coupe. Stieglitz created a new variation on the androgynous modern woman theme when he photographed her tightly scarfed head against hard, shining metal.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1932
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.69
——————————
When O’Keeffe returned to Lake George at the end of a New Mexico summer, she left her jeans and denim shirts behind. There are no photographs by Stieglitz of her dressed in denim, a fabric, associated with men, labor, and roughing it in the West. Jeans were not yet commonly accepted dress for women in the East. She did, however, bring back some of her nearly acquired bandanas and scarfs—basic geometric patterns were her favorites—that she liked to wrap around her head and knot at the back.
She also returned with cars she bought in New Mexico, first the Model-A Ford pictured in these two images and, in 1933, a Ford V-8 convertible coupe. Stieglitz created a new variation on the androgynous modern woman theme when he photographed her tightly scarfed head against hard, shining metal.

Afred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1932 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.69 ------------------------------ When O'Keeffe returned to Lake George at the end of a New Mexico summer, she left her jeans and denim shirts behind. There are no photographs by Stieglitz of her dressed in denim, a fabric, associated with men, labor, and roughing it in the West. Jeans were not yet commonly accepted dress for women in the East. She did, however, bring back some of her nearly acquired bandanas and scarfs—basic geometric patterns were her favorites—that she liked to wrap around her head and knot at the back. She also returned with cars she bought in New Mexico, first the Model-A Ford piectured in these two images and, in 1933, a Ford V-8 convertible coupe. Stieglitz created a new variation on the androgynous modern woman theme when he photographed her tightly scarfed head against hard, shining metal.

Afred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1932
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.69
——————————
When O’Keeffe returned to Lake George at the end of a New Mexico summer, she left her jeans and denim shirts behind. There are no photographs by Stieglitz of her dressed in denim, a fabric, associated with men, labor, and roughing it in the West. Jeans were not yet commonly accepted dress for women in the East. She did, however, bring back some of her nearly acquired bandanas and scarfs—basic geometric patterns were her favorites—that she liked to wrap around her head and knot at the back.
She also returned with cars she bought in New Mexico, first the Model-A Ford pictured in these two images and, in 1933, a Ford V-8 convertible coupe. Stieglitz created a new variation on the androgynous modern woman theme when he photographed her tightly scarfed head against hard, shining metal.

Old Kentucky Manufacturing Co. Shirt, circa 1950s Blue cotton chambray Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0610

Old Kentucky Manufacturing Co.
Shirt, circa 1950s
Blue cotton chambray
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0610

Shirt, circa 1950s-60s Blue cotton denim Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0603 -------------------------- Cowhands in the West wore sturdy, long-sleeved blue denim tops as protection against the sun. O'Keeffe acquired similar men's-style cotton shirts to wear with jeans in the Southwest.

Shirt, circa 1950s-60s
Blue cotton denim
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0603
————————–
Cowhands in the West wore sturdy, long-sleeved blue denim tops as protection against the sun. O’Keeffe acquired similar men’s-style cotton shirts to wear with jeans in the Southwest.

Walter McCrory Inc., New York Shirt, circa late 1940s Blue and white cotton with woven check Georgia O'Keefe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0255 ------------------------------ This shirt's collar points must have been too long for O'Keeffe's taste, or too worn, since at some point she turned the entire pointed collar to the inside of the shirt and sewed it down, making the collar band into her favored stand-up neckline. She expressed her fondness for this tailored man's shirt, and for denim in general, in a letter she sent to the art critic at The New Yorker who gave it to her: My dear Murdock Pemberton: It is a most beautiful shirt—I wear it with great pleasure—you can always send me your shirts if you don't give them to anyone else if they are anything like this one—It is fine with blue jeans—the costume of this country—I rather think they are our only national costumes.

Walter McCrory Inc., New York
Shirt, circa late 1940s
Blue and white cotton with woven check
Georgia O’Keefe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0255
——————————
This shirt’s collar points must have been too long for O’Keeffe’s taste, or too worn, since at some point she turned the entire pointed collar to the inside of the shirt and sewed it down, making the collar band into her favored stand-up neckline. She expressed her fondness for this tailored man’s shirt, and for denim in general, in a letter she sent to the art critic at The New Yorker who gave it to her:
My dear Murdock Pemberton:
It is a most beautiful shirt—I wear it with great pleasure—you can always send me your shirts if you don’t give them to anyone else if they are anything like this one—It is fine with blue jeans—the costume of this country—I rather think they are our only national costumes.

Georgia O'Keeffe Rib and Jawbone, 1935 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 87.136.5a-b

Georgia O’Keeffe
Rib and Jawbone, 1935
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 87.136.5a-b

Georgia O'Keeffe Hills—Lavender, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, II, 1935 Oil on board Collection of Ted and Mary Jo Shen -------------------------------- Beginning in 1934, O'Keeffe spent summers at a dude ranch. She sought out Ghost Ranch because of its natural wonders and remoteness from cities and the fast pace of modern life. The artist became so enamored of the geological formations of the badlands there that she began to complain that the landscapes at Lake George, New York, that she once painted were too "green" and "soft" by comparison. In New Mexico, she found "such a beautiful, untouched lonely feeling place, such a fine part of what I call the 'Faraway.'"

Georgia O’Keeffe
Hills—Lavender, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, II, 1935
Oil on board
Collection of Ted and Mary Jo Shen
——————————–
Beginning in 1934, O’Keeffe spent summers at a dude ranch. She sought out Ghost Ranch because of its natural wonders and remoteness from cities and the fast pace of modern life. The artist became so enamored of the geological formations of the badlands there that she began to complain that the landscapes at Lake George, New York, that she once painted were too “green” and “soft” by comparison. In New Mexico, she found “such a beautiful, untouched lonely feeling place, such a fine part of what I call the ‘Faraway.'”

Georgia O'Keeffe Part of the Cliff, 1946 Oil on canvas Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.5.202 --------------------------- Intense color was part of O'Keeffe's everyday landscape in the Southwest. She said New Mexico was "a painter's country," and she enjoyed using a broader palette. At Ghost Ranch, she turned to reds, pinks, and purples to paint hills and mountains, and pinks and yellows to depict the stony cliffs visible from her house. "Out here," she told a friend, "half your work is done for you."

Georgia O’Keeffe
Part of the Cliff, 1946
Oil on canvas
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.5.202
—————————
Intense color was part of O’Keeffe’s everyday landscape in the Southwest. She said New Mexico was “a painter’s country,” and she enjoyed using a broader palette. At Ghost Ranch, she turned to reds, pinks, and purples to paint hills and mountains, and pinks and yellows to depict the stony cliffs visible from her house. “Out here,” she told a friend, “half your work is done for you.”

Georgia O'Keeffe Red Hills with the Pedernal, 1936 Pastel on paper mounted to wood-pulp board Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 87.136.4 --------------------------- The Pedernal is a flat-topped mountain that commands the Ghost Ranch landscape and is visible for miles in every direction. O'Keeffe was inspired by its unusual topography and regal presence. It became for her what Mount Fuji was for Hokusai or Mont Sainte-Victoire for Paul Cezanne—a compelling natural feature to be explored again and again in different compositions. Late in life, she liked to tell interviewers that she thought if she painted the Pedernal often enough, God would give it to her.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Red Hills with the Pedernal, 1936
Pastel on paper mounted to wood-pulp board
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 87.136.4
—————————
The Pedernal is a flat-topped mountain that commands the Ghost Ranch landscape and is visible for miles in every direction. O’Keeffe was inspired by its unusual topography and regal presence. It became for her what Mount Fuji was for Hokusai or Mont Sainte-Victoire for Paul Cezanne—a compelling natural feature to be explored again and again in different compositions. Late in life, she liked to tell interviewers that she thought if she painted the Pedernal often enough, God would give it to her.

Georgia O'Keeffe Ram's Head, White Hollyhock-Hills (Ram's Head and White Hollyhock, New Mexico), 1935 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Edith and Milton Lowenthal, 1992.11.28 ------------------------ The rows of little hills under the Ram's Head at Ghost Ranch must have been formed by thousands of years of wind and rain...I had looked out on the holls for weeks and painted them again and again—had climbed and ridden over them—so beautifully soft, so difficult...I had painted those hills from the car in bright sunlight and had failed dismally but I could see them—farther away—from my window in the rain. So I tried again. They seemed right with the Ram's Head...I don't remember where I picked up the head—or the hollyhock. Flowers were planted among the vegetables in the garden between the house and the hills and I probably picked the hollyhock one day as I walked past. My paintings sometimes grow by pieces from what is around. —Georgia O'Keeffe, 1976 In the mid-1930s, O'Keeffe's frame maker George Of made scalloped and punched sheet metal frames for some of her paintings. These were inspired by vernacular traditions in tin ware made by Hispanic artists and artisans in the Southwest.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Ram’s Head, White Hollyhock-Hills (Ram’s Head and White Hollyhock, New Mexico), 1935
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Edith and Milton Lowenthal, 1992.11.28
————————
The rows of little hills under the Ram’s Head at Ghost Ranch must have been formed by thousands of years of wind and rain…I had looked out on the holls for weeks and painted them again and again—had climbed and ridden over them—so beautifully soft, so difficult…I had painted those hills from the car in bright sunlight and had failed dismally but I could see them—farther away—from my window in the rain. So I tried again. They seemed right with the Ram’s Head…I don’t remember where I picked up the head—or the hollyhock. Flowers were planted among the vegetables in the garden between the house and the hills and I probably picked the hollyhock one day as I walked past. My paintings sometimes grow by pieces from what is around.
—Georgia O’Keeffe, 1976
In the mid-1930s, O’Keeffe’s frame maker George Of made scalloped and punched sheet metal frames for some of her paintings. These were inspired by vernacular traditions in tin ware made by Hispanic artists and artisans in the Southwest.

Tony Vaccaro American, born 1922 Georgia in the Car with Hat—I, 1960 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.25 ---------------------------------- O'Keeffe liked to follow the vaquero tradition of tying a silk scarf or cotton bandana around her head and then adding a hat.

Tony Vaccaro
American, born 1922
Georgia in the Car with Hat—I, 1960
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.25
———————————-
O’Keeffe liked to follow the vaquero tradition of tying a silk scarf or cotton bandana around her head and then adding a hat.

John B. Stetson Company American, founded 1865 Hat, circa 1940s Black fur felt, leather Private collection, courtesy of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico ----------------------------- O'Keeffe adopted new headgear in the Southwest to go with her denim. She rejected the stiff cowboy hats that dude ranchers commonly wore, choosing instead a soft, black felt vaquero or gaucho hat, worn by Central and South American cowboys and imported into the American West. The hat's elementary geometries—a solid cylinder mounted on a round, flat plane—likely appealed to her modernist sensibilities. She left her hats undecorated and wore them long after they had begun to show wear and tear.

John B. Stetson Company
American, founded 1865
Hat, circa 1940s
Black fur felt, leather
Private collection, courtesy of the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico
—————————–
O’Keeffe adopted new headgear in the Southwest to go with her denim. She rejected the stiff cowboy hats that dude ranchers commonly wore, choosing instead a soft, black felt vaquero or gaucho hat, worn by Central and South American cowboys and imported into the American West. The hat’s elementary geometries—a solid cylinder mounted on a round, flat plane—likely appealed to her modernist sensibilities. She left her hats undecorated and wore them long after they had begun to show wear and tear.

Ansel Adams American, 1902-1984 Georgia O'Keeffe and Orville Cox, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona, 1937 (printed 1981) Gelatin silver print Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut; Gift of Murray Bring and Kathleen Delaney, 2008.191.5 -------------------------- O'Keeffe is supremely happy and painting, as usual, supremely swell things. When she goes out riding with a blue shirt, black vest and black hat, she scampers around against the thunder clouds—I tell you, it's something. —Ansel Adams in letter to Alfred Stieglitz, September 23, 1937 With a 35mm camera, Ansel Adams captured a smiling, flirtatious O'Keeffe with Ghost Ranch's head wrangler, Orville Cox, standing on the rim of Canyon de Chelly. Against a dramatic sky, her face is framed by her widebrimmed hat and wrap, beneath which can be glimpsed a silver cuff bracelet, one of her few pieces of jewelry.

Ansel Adams
American, 1902-1984
Georgia O’Keeffe and Orville Cox, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona, 1937 (printed 1981)
Gelatin silver print
Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut; Gift of Murray Bring and Kathleen Delaney, 2008.191.5
————————–
O’Keeffe is supremely happy and painting, as usual, supremely swell things. When she goes out riding with a blue shirt, black vest and black hat, she scampers around against the thunder clouds—I tell you, it’s something.
—Ansel Adams in letter to Alfred Stieglitz, September 23, 1937
With a 35mm camera, Ansel Adams captured a smiling, flirtatious O’Keeffe with Ghost Ranch’s head wrangler, Orville Cox, standing on the rim of Canyon de Chelly. Against a dramatic sky, her face is framed by her wide brimmed hat and wrap, beneath which can be glimpsed a silver cuff bracelet, one of her few pieces of jewelry.

Georgia O'Keeffe Black Place II, 1944 Oil on canvas The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1959, 59.204.1 -------------------------- O'Keeffe named this favorite painting spot the "Black Place" after one of her favorite colors. Barren of any growth, with stony black and gray rolling hills striated with color, it was described by the artist as "a mile of elephants." To get to the site in the Bisti Badlands of New Mexico, she would drive 150 miles over rough roads and camp out a few days, as there were no local amenities.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Black Place II, 1944
Oil on canvas
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1959, 59.204.1
————————–
O’Keeffe named this favorite painting spot the “Black Place” after one of her favorite colors. Barren of any growth, with stony black and gray rolling hills striated with color, it was described by the artist as “a mile of elephants.” To get to the site in the Bisti Badlands of New Mexico, she would drive 150 miles over rough roads and camp out a few days, as there were no local amenities.

Georgia O'Keeffe The Mountain, New Mexico, 1931 Oil on canvas Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Purchase, 32.14

Georgia O’Keeffe
The Mountain, New Mexico, 1931
Oil on canvas
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Purchase, 32.14

Georgia O'Keeffe Stump in Red Hills, 1940 Oil on canvas Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Stephane Janssen Tust in memory of R. Michael Johns, 1996.7.2 ---------------------------------- When O'Keeffe painted in New York, she had to wait until the leaves had turned in autumn to create landscapes flush with red, one of her favorite colors. In New Mexico, she found fiery reds everywhere in the terrain around her, and she used the color exuberantly.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Stump in Red Hills, 1940
Oil on canvas
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Stephane Janssen Tust in memory of R. Michael Johns, 1996.7.2
———————————-
When O’Keeffe painted in New York, she had to wait until the leaves had turned in autumn to create landscapes flush with red, one of her favorite colors. In New Mexico, she found fiery reds everywhere in the terrain around her, and she used the color exuberantly.

Claudius Lafond Jacket, circa 1950s White cotton twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0427 Inner garment: Dress and Belt, circa 1950s Red and purple cotton madras Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0098 ----------------------------- O'Keeffe rejected the synthetic fibers that were popular during and after World War II, such as nylon, acrylic, and polyester. When traveling in the 1950s and 1960s, she continued to seek out natural cottons and silks in either a single color or sometimes with stripes, checks, or plaids. She may have bought this heavyweight cotton-work jacket when she went to France for the first time, in 1953. She most likely designed the plaid Madras dress for herself; its first iteration may have been a robe or wrap dress that she then decided to stitch up the front. The cleverness of its design is in the abstract and seamless interaction of the red and purple areas, with blocks of purple used at the back of the collar, at the bottom of the sleeves, and in a large band across the middle of the front. It is an example of her adding color not only to her paintings in New Mexico but also to her wardrobe.

Claudius Lafond
Jacket, circa 1950s
White cotton twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0427
Inner garment:
Dress and Belt, circa 1950s
Red and purple cotton madras
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0098
—————————–
O’Keeffe rejected the synthetic fibers that were popular during and after World War II, such as nylon, acrylic, and polyester. When traveling in the 1950s and 1960s, she continued to seek out natural cottons and silks in either a single color or sometimes with stripes, checks, or plaids.
She may have bought this heavyweight cotton-work jacket when she went to France for the first time, in 1953.
She most likely designed the plaid Madras dress for herself; its first iteration may have been a robe or wrap dress that she then decided to stitch up the front. The cleverness of its design is in the abstract and seamless interaction of the red and purple areas, with blocks of purple used at the back of the collar, at the bottom of the sleeves, and in a large band across the middle of the front. It is an example of her adding color not only to her paintings in New Mexico but also to her wardrobe.

Don Worth American, 1924-2009 Georgia O'Keeffe with Chair, 1958 (printed 1968) Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Andrew Smith and Clare Lozier, 1997.16.1 -------------------------- Customarily, O'Keeffe wore black and white when photographers came to visit, but in 1958, she made an exception for Don Worth. She posed for him in a corner of her courtyard at Abiquiu wearing her white French work jacket over a red plaid dress (both shown nearby). The artist is a light point at the center of an abstracted composition: flat planes of adobe and ground, the dark doorway, and geometric floor tiles. The metal butterfly chair frame balances the visual weight of the artist and is an example of her modernist taste in decor.

Don Worth
American, 1924-2009
Georgia O’Keeffe with Chair, 1958 (printed 1968)
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Andrew Smith and Clare Lozier, 1997.16.1
————————–
Customarily, O’Keeffe wore black and white when photographers came to visit, but in 1958, she made an exception for Don Worth. She posed for him in a corner of her courtyard at Abiquiu wearing her white French work jacket over a red plaid dress (both shown nearby). The artist is a light point at the center of an abstracted composition: flat planes of adobe and ground, the dark doorway, and geometric floor tiles. The metal butterfly chair frame balances the visual weight of the artist and is an example of her modernist taste in decor.

Laura Gilpin American, 1891-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1953 Gelatin silver print The Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, P1979.130.6 ---------------------------------- For her first sitting with Laura Gilpin, O'Keeffe wore an all-white ensemble: a blouse, jacket, and broomstick skirt, accessorized with one of her round silver Navajo pins. Gilpin shot O'Keeffe in the Abiquiu studio from a low vantage point, making the artist's tools a still life within the portrait. The varied tones and folds of O'Keeffe's white ensemble are skillfully arrayed against the cooler and smoother whites of the clay wall and still, Gilpin, who lived in and photographed the American West, was the first woman to ask O'Keeffe to sit for her. They became friends, and Gilpin returned to photograph the artist and her two homes on two more occasions.

Laura Gilpin
American, 1891-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1953
Gelatin silver print
The Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, P1979.130.6
———————————-
For her first sitting with Laura Gilpin, O’Keeffe wore an all-white ensemble: a blouse, jacket, and broomstick skirt, accessorized with one of her round silver Navajo pins. Gilpin shot O’Keeffe in the Abiquiu studio from a low vantage point, making the artist’s tools a still life within the portrait. The varied tones and folds of O’Keeffe’s white ensemble are skillfully arrayed against the cooler and smoother whites of the clay wall and still, Gilpin, who lived in and photographed the American West, was the first woman to ask O’Keeffe to sit for her. They became friends, and Gilpin returned to photograph the artist and her two homes on two more occasions.

Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 Georgia O'Keeffe in Front of Abiquiu House Salita Door, 1956 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0977 Georgia O'Keeffe Abiquiu House, Salita Door, circa 1964 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006-06-1406 --------------------------------------- O'Keeffe posed frequently in the black doorway for photographers like Todd Webb, whose image can be seen nearby. When Webb helped her acquire a 35mm Leica camera, she used it like a sketch pad, making images to serve as studies for her paintings. These photographs of the black door and the patio emphasize the same abstract values she showcased in her art. Georgia O'Keeffe Abiquiu House, Patio, circa 1964 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1398

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe in Front of Abiquiu House Salita Door, 1956
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0977
Georgia O’Keeffe
Abiquiu House, Salita Door, circa 1964
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006-06-1406
—————————————
O’Keeffe posed frequently in the black doorway for photographers like Todd Webb, whose image can be seen nearby. When Webb helped her acquire a 35mm Leica camera, she used it like a sketch pad, making images to serve as studies for her paintings. These photographs of the black door and the patio emphasize the same abstract values she showcased in her art.
Georgia O’Keeffe
Abiquiu House, Patio, circa 1964
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1398

Claire McCardell for Townley Frocks American, 1905-1958 Dress, circa 1950s Blue-gray cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0430 ------------------------------- After World War II, the fashion designer Claire McCardell became internationally recognized for casual but stylish ready-to-wear clothes, like this simple shift dress. Celebrated for her "American look," freed from the yoke of Parisian couture, McCardell appealed to O'Keeffe, who regularly described herself as completely American in her art. The artist told a young caregiver that McCardell was "the best woman designer we've ever had." O'Keeffe liked this dress so much that she had local seamstresses make her copies of it in other fabrics and colors. Navajo Button Retrofitted into a Pin, circa 1930s Silver Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.626 ------------------------------------ This plain domed circle is one of a matching set of six vintage Navajo buttons made into pins that O'Keeffe owned. She wore only one at a time, either at the base of her V-necks or to pull together two sides of a garment just below her chin. Although she was not interested in jewelry when living in New York, when she went to New Mexico, where Hispanic and Native American jewelry-makers dominated the marketplace, she acquired a few select pieces, including a silver Navajo wrist cuff and a squash blossom necklace (on view in another gallery) that she hung as a decoration on her bedroom wall. Concho Belt, 20th century Silver and leather Private collection -------------------------------------- O'Keeffe wore this belt with both her McCardell dress and signature black wrap dresses.

Claire McCardell for Townley Frocks
American, 1905-1958
Dress, circa 1950s
Blue-gray cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0430
——————————-
After World War II, the fashion designer Claire McCardell became internationally recognized for casual but stylish ready-to-wear clothes, like this simple shift dress. Celebrated for her “American look,” freed from the yoke of Parisian couture, McCardell appealed to O’Keeffe, who regularly described herself as completely American in her art. The artist told a young caregiver that McCardell was “the best woman designer we’ve ever had.” O’Keeffe liked this dress so much that she had local seamstresses make her copies of it in other fabrics and colors.
Navajo Button Retrofitted into a Pin, circa 1930s
Silver
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.626
————————————
This plain domed circle is one of a matching set of six vintage Navajo buttons made into pins that O’Keeffe owned. She wore only one at a time, either at the base of her V-necks or to pull together two sides of a garment just below her chin. Although she was not interested in jewelry when living in New York, when she went to New Mexico, where Hispanic and Native American jewelry-makers dominated the marketplace, she acquired a few select pieces, including a silver Navajo wrist cuff and a squash blossom necklace (on view in another gallery) that she hung as a decoration on her bedroom wall.
Concho Belt, 20th century
Silver and leather
Private collection
————————————–
O’Keeffe wore this belt with both her McCardell dress and signature black wrap dresses.

Armi Ratia for Marimekko Finnish, 1912-1979 "Mother's Coat" Dress with Matching Belt, designed circa mid-1950s Cotton printed in black and brown stripes Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0421 ----------------------------- In the early 1960s, O'Keeffe acquired four dresses from the Finnish design firm Marimekko, whose boldly printed modern clothes had recently burst upon the American market. Marimekko's designs incorporated features that the artist had already made part of her personal style: waitless garments, natural fibers, pockets, mandarin collars and scoop necks, three-quarter sleeves, and round buttons. When choosing her dresses, she passed over the more brightly colored fabrics in favor of ones tfrom the subdued end of the Marimekko palette, wearing them as everyday clothes in New Mexico.

Armi Ratia for Marimekko
Finnish, 1912-1979
“Mother’s Coat” Dress with Matching Belt, designed circa mid-1950s
Cotton printed in black and brown stripes
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0421
—————————–
In the early 1960s, O’Keeffe acquired four dresses from the Finnish design firm Marimekko, whose boldly printed modern clothes had recently burst upon the American market. Marimekko’s designs incorporated features that the artist had already made part of her personal style: waistless garments, natural fibers, pockets, mandarin collars and scoop necks, three-quarter sleeves, and round buttons. When choosing her dresses, she passed over the more brightly colored fabrics in favor of ones tfrom the subdued end of the Marimekko palette, wearing them as everyday clothes in New Mexico.

Annika Rimala for Marimekko Finnish, 1936-2014 "Varjo" Dress, crca 1963 Cotton printed in black and gray Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0420

Annika Rimala for Marimekko
Finnish, 1936-2014
“Varjo” Dress, crca 1963
Cotton printed in black and gray
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0420

Georgia O'Keeffe Black Patio Door, 1955 Oil on canvas Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, 1966.19 Georgia O'Keeffe Patio with Cloud, 1956 Oil on canvas Milwaukee Art Museum; Gift of Mrs. Edward R. Wehr, M1957.10 ------------------------------- In the 1950s, as American abstraction began to get international attention, O'Keeffe started to paint large images of the black door, wall, and paving stones of her Abiquiu patio at different times of day and in different sessions. Some were quite abstract while others were more grounded in nature. She also took photographs of the door, two of which can be seen elsewhere in this gallery. It became a serial motif for her and linked her practice in New Mexico with that of younger New York abstract painters, such as Mark Rothko and Elleworth Kelly, who created multiple works around a repeated form. O'Keeffe clearly admired the formal qualities of the wooden patio door, and frequently recounted the importance to her in finding and renovating the Albiquiu house. That wall with a door in it was something I had to have. It took me ten years to get it—three more years to [?]

Georgia O’Keeffe
Black Patio Door, 1955
Oil on canvas
Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas, 1966.19

Georgia O'Keeffe Patio with Cloud, 1956 Oil on canvas Milwaukee Art Museum; Gift of Mrs. Edward R. Wehr, M1957.10 ------------------------------- In the 1950s, as American abstraction began to get international attention, O'Keeffe started to paint large images of the black door, wall, and paving stones of her Abiquiu patio at different times of day and in different sessions. Some were quite abstract while others were more grounded in nature. She also took photographs of the door, two of which can be seen elsewhere in this gallery. It became a serial motif for her and linked her practice in New Mexico with that of younger New York abstract painters, such as Mark Rothko and Elleworth Kelly, who created multiple works around a repeated form. O'Keeffe clearly admired the formal qualities of the wooden patio door, and frequently recounted its importance to her in finding and renovating the Albiquiu house. That wall with a door in it was something I had to have. It took me ten years to get it—three more years to fix the house so I could live in it—and after that the wall with a door was painted many times.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Patio with Cloud, 1956
Oil on canvas
Milwaukee Art Museum; Gift of Mrs. Edward R. Wehr, M1957.10
——————————-
In the 1950s, as American abstraction began to get international attention, O’Keeffe started to paint large images of the black door, wall, and paving stones of her Abiquiu patio at different times of day and in different sessions. Some were quite abstract while others were more grounded in nature. She also took photographs of the door, two of which can be seen elsewhere in this gallery. It became a serial motif for her and linked her practice in New Mexico with that of younger New York abstract painters, such as Mark Rothko and Elleworth Kelly, who created multiple works around a repeated form.
O’Keeffe clearly admired the formal qualities of the wooden patio door, and frequently recounted its importance to her in finding and renovating the Albiquiu house.
That wall with a door in it was something I had to have. It took me ten years to get it—three more years to fix the house so I could live in it—and after that the wall with a door was painted many times.

Georgia O'Keeffe Blue II, 1958 Oil on canvas Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 1997.05.05

Georgia O’Keeffe
Blue II, 1958
Oil on canvas
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of the Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 1997.05.05

Georgia O'Keeffe In the Patio IX, circa 1964 Oil on canvas mounted on panel The Jan T. and Marica Vilcek Collection; Promised gift to The Vilcek Foundation, 2012.05.01 ------------------------------- The "V" was a significant form in O'Keeffe's wardrobe—see the Pucci dress nearby—and in her paintings like this abstracted image of her beloved patio at Abiquiu. Her attraction to this simple geometric shape is also evident in the adjacent series of Polaroids she took at Glen Canyon while on a rafting trip on the Colorado River in 1961. She was captivated by the natural V created by the dark rock formations against the bright sky, and took a series of pictures capturing that slice of landscape under different light conditions.

Georgia O’Keeffe
In the Patio IX, circa 1964
Oil on canvas mounted on panel
The Jan T. and Marica Vilcek Collection; Promised gift to The Vilcek Foundation, 2012.05.01
——————————-
The “V” was a significant form in O’Keeffe’s wardrobe—see the Pucci dress nearby—and in her paintings like this abstracted image of her beloved patio at Abiquiu. Her attraction to this simple geometric shape is also evident in the adjacent series of Polaroids she took at Glen Canyon while on a rafting trip on the Colorado River in 1961. She was captivated by the natural V created by the dark rock formations against the bright sky, and took a series of pictures capturing that slice of landscape under different light conditions.

Emilio Pucci Italian, 1913-1992 "Chute" Dress, circa 1954 Black and white cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0614 ---------------------------- The 1954 "Chute" dress was one of the first Pucci dresses to be sold in the American market, testifying to O'Keeffe's interest in and awareness of contemporary fashion. It was also a dress that featured pure geometric forms at a time when O'Keeffe was returning to abstraction in paintings like the blue, black, and white ones nearby. The waistless dress flared like a "chute" (or parachute), with the black shapes pieced together to extend without interruption from the shoulders to the hem. The design incorporates O'Keeffe's signature V-neckline, along with the contrasting bands that she often added at the neck and wrists, and convenient side pockets. When this garment was catalogued, hankies were found in its pockets and pin marks at the V-neck, suggesting she wore it with her Calder or Navajo button pins.

Emilio Pucci
Italian, 1913-1992
“Chute” Dress, circa 1954
Black and white cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0614
—————————-
The 1954 “Chute” dress was one of the first Pucci dresses to be sold in the American market, testifying to O’Keeffe’s interest in and awareness of contemporary fashion. It was also a dress that featured pure geometric forms at a time when O’Keeffe was returning to abstraction in paintings like the blue, black, and white ones nearby. The waistless dress flared like a “chute” (or parachute), with the black shapes pieced together to extend without interruption from the shoulders to the hem. The design incorporates O’Keeffe’s signature V-neckline, along with the contrasting bands that she often added at the neck and wrists, and convenient side pockets. When this garment was catalogued, hankies were found in its pockets and pin marks at the V-neck, suggesting she wore it with her Calder or Navajo button pins.

Georgia O'Keeffe Pelvis II, 1944 Oil on canvas The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; George A Hearn Fund, 1947, 47.19 ----------------------------- After her second summer painting the Southwest, O'Keeffe began to create still lifes featuring the bleached animal bones and skulls picked up on her walks into the desert. When Stieglitz began to show these large and confrontational images, New York art critics, most of whom had never visited the American West, were startled and did not known how to write about them. Some interpreted them as memento mori—mediations on death and the transient nature of living things. O'Keeffe vehemently disagreed, saying that to her, bleached bones represented the beauty of the high desert. She described her motives in the exhibition catalogue for her 1944 exhibition at Stieglitz's gallery An American Place: ...when I started painting the pelvis bones, I was most interested in the holes in the bones—what I saw through them—particularly the blue from holding them up in the sun against the sky as one is apt to do when one seems to have more sky than earth in one's world...They were most wonderful against the Blue—that Blue that will always be there as if is now after all man's destruction is finished.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Pelvis II, 1944
Oil on canvas
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; George A Hearn Fund, 1947, 47.19
—————————–
After her second summer painting the Southwest, O’Keeffe began to create still lifes featuring the bleached animal bones and skulls picked up on her walks into the desert. When Stieglitz began to show these large and confrontational images, New York art critics, most of whom had never visited the American West, were startled and did not known how to write about them. Some interpreted them as memento mori—mediations on death and the transient nature of living things. O’Keeffe vehemently disagreed, saying that to her, bleached bones represented the beauty of the high desert. She described her motives in the exhibition catalogue for her 1944 exhibition at Stieglitz’s gallery An American Place:
…when I started painting the pelvis bones, I was most interested in the holes in the bones—what I saw through them—particularly the blue from holding them up in the sun against the sky as one is apt to do when one seems to have more sky than earth in one’s world…They were most wonderful against the Blue—that Blue that will always be there as if is now after all man’s destruction is finished.

Georgia O'Keeffe Glen Canyon, circa 1964 Polaroids Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1084; 2006.6.1086; 2006.6.1092 Georgia O'Keeffe Glen Canyon, circa 1964 Polaroids Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1085; 2006.6.1088; 2006.6.1090

Georgia O’Keeffe
Glen Canyon, circa 1964
Polaroids
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1084; 2006.6.1086; 2006.6.1092
Georgia O’Keeffe
Glen Canyon, circa 1964
Polaroids
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1085; 2006.6.1088; 2006.6.1090

Asian Influences

The teacher Arthur Wesley Dow introduced O’Keeffe to the arts and cultures of Japan and China, and she became a lifelong student of Eastern traditions. She visited American museums with major Asian collections and built an impressive private library that included books on Asian art, calligraphy, gardens, tea and poetry. After Stieglitz died, she traveled to many new places, including Japan, China, and India. She visited gardens, temples, and museums, finding reinforcement for the central idea by which she lived: everything in one’s environment should be beautiful and unified in a style of simplicity and understatement.

From her early years in New York, O’Keeffe collected kimonos to wear around the house, and in her later years adopted a kimono-like wrap dress as her signature outfit. Traveling to Hong Kong in her seventies, she bought off-the-rack garments and accessories, and ordered custom-made coats and dress suits in local silks incorporating details like mandarin collars and frog button closures.

Georgia O'Keeffe Drawing V, 1959 Charcoal on paper Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 1997.04.08 ------------------------------ O'Keeffe credited Dow with giving her a one-sentence theory of art by which to paint and live: she sought to "fill space in a beautiful way." She applied this idea to her drawings and paintings but also to the ways she dressed and furnished her homes. This charcoal drawing harked back to her earliest abstractions and belongs to a series of paintings of riverbeds seen from the air.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Drawing V, 1959
Charcoal on paper
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Burnett Foundation and The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 1997.04.08
——————————
O’Keeffe credited Dow with giving her a one-sentence theory of art by which to paint and live: she sought to “fill space in a beautiful way.” She applied this idea to her drawings and paintings but also to the ways she dressed and furnished her homes. This charcoal drawing harked back to her earliest abstractions and belongs to a series of paintings of riverbeds seen from the air.

Arthur Wesley Dow American, 1857-1922 The Long Road—Argilla Road, Ipswich, circa 1898 Color woodcut Brooklyn Museum; Alfred T. White Fund, 1999.115

Arthur Wesley Dow
American, 1857-1922
The Long Road—Argilla Road, Ipswich, circa 1898
Color woodcut
Brooklyn Museum; Alfred T. White Fund, 1999.115

Arthur Wesley Dow American, 1857-1922 Composition: A Series of Exercises in Art Structure for the Use of Students and Teachers (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Page & Company; first published 1899; 9th edition, 1922) Brooklyn Museum Library Collection O'Keeffe first introduction to the arts and cultures of Asia came through the modernist artist and influential teacher arthur Wesley Dow, urged students to study Japanese prints for their abstract compositions and to abandon all forms of pictorial imitation, expecially Western modes of perspective and modeling. These avant-garde ideas led O'keeffe to make her first abstractions. Dow's ideas were disseminated widely through his book Composition (1899), which was heavily illustrated with Japanese examples. The color woodcut The Long Road, hanging here, in which the landscape is rendered as an almost abstract arrangement of colors and shapes, shows Dow exploring this new sensibility in his own work.

Arthur Wesley Dow
American, 1857-1922
Composition: A Series of Exercises in Art Structure for the Use of Students and Teachers
(Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Page & Company; first published 1899; 9th edition, 1922)
Brooklyn Museum Library Collection
O’Keeffe first introduction to the arts and cultures of Asia came through the modernist artist and influential teacher arthur Wesley Dow, urged students to study Japanese prints for their abstract compositions and to abandon all forms of pictorial imitation, expecially Western modes of perspective and modeling. These avant-garde ideas led O’keeffe to make her first abstractions.
Dow’s ideas were disseminated widely through his book Composition (1899), which was heavily illustrated with Japanese examples. The color woodcut The Long Road, hanging here, in which the landscape is rendered as an almost abstract arrangement of colors and shapes, shows Dow exploring this new sensibility in his own work.

Bergdorf Goodman Shirt, 1970s Ivory polyester knit Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0296

Dress (Top and Skirt), circa late 1950s—early 1960s Made in Hong Kong Black silk faille Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anaa Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0351a-b --------------------------------- In blouses and jackets O'Keeffe favored the stand-up mandarin collar, a detail from traditional Chinese costume. When she visited Hong Kong in 1959 and again in 1960, she commissioned tailors to create bespoke clothing fusing features of Eastern and Western styles. The A-line skirt of this elegant silk suit is lightly flared and the fitted, sleeveless top has a mandarin collar lined in white silk. The Chinese coiled silk "buttons" are purely decorative, not functional. The garment is closed with hidden hooks and eyes.

Dress (Top and Skirt), circa late 1950s—early 1960s
Made in Hong Kong
Black silk faille
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anaa Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0351a-b
———————————
In blouses and jackets O’Keeffe favored the stand-up mandarin collar, a detail from traditional Chinese costume. When she visited Hong Kong in 1959 and again in 1960, she commissioned tailors to create bespoke clothing fusing features of Eastern and Western styles. The A-line skirt of this elegant silk suit is lightly flared and the fitted, sleeveless top has a mandarin collar lined in white silk. The Chinese coiled silk “buttons” are purely decorative, not functional. The garment is closed with hidden hooks and eyes.Bergdorf Goodman
Shirt, 1970s
Ivory polyester knit
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0296

Coat, circa late 1950s-early 1960s Made in Hong Kong Black silk damask and red silk satin Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0360 --------------------------------- This custom-made coat of traditional Chinese design features a mandarin collar and hand-made silk braid "frog" buttons that, when fastened, perfectly align the big medallions of the fabric's design. The folded-back cuffs, lined in silk, are another characteristic of traditional Chinese dress.

Coat, circa late 1950s-early 1960s
Made in Hong Kong
Black silk damask and red silk satin
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0360
———————————
This custom-made coat of traditional Chinese design features a mandarin collar and hand-made silk braid “frog” buttons that, when fastened, perfectly align the big medallions of the fabric’s design. The folded-back cuffs, lined in silk, are another characteristic of traditional Chinese dress.

Geta Sandals, circa 1959 Wood, black velvet, and metal Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0504a-b ------------------------- On her second trip to Japan, in 1960, O'Keeffe purchased a pair of geta sandals, designed to carry the wearer's feet two to three inches off the ground so that the kimono's hemline did not get dirty. O'Keeffe's geta sandals are well crafted of wood with thick black velvet thongs; a beautiful metal knob in the shape of a flower attaches the thong to the bottom of the show. She may have worn them around the house, as they show wear.

Geta Sandals, circa 1959
Wood, black velvet, and metal
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0504a-b
————————-
On her second trip to Japan, in 1960, O’Keeffe purchased a pair of geta sandals, designed to carry the wearer’s feet two to three inches off the ground so that the kimono’s hemline did not get dirty. O’Keeffe’s geta sandals are well crafted of wood with thick black velvet thongs; a beautiful metal knob in the shape of a flower attaches the thong to the bottom of the show. She may have worn them around the house, as they show wear.

Georgia O'Keeffe Abstraction, 1946 (cast 1979/80), 3/7 White-lacquered bronze Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.05.192 ----------------------------- In Abstraction, O'Keeffe treated three-dimensional forms as drawn lines, changing in width and thickness and enclosing rounded spaces that vary in diameter and size. The voids are as visually active as the lines that define them. This 1946 sculpture began as a small tabletop piece molded in clay. Beginning in 1979, several editions of the sculpture were made in various sizes and materials such as which-lacquered bronze and cast aluminum. O'Keeffe posed for Bruce Weber in front of a scaled-up version of Abstraction in a photograph on view nearby.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Abstraction, 1946 (cast 1979/80), 3/7
White-lacquered bronze
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.05.192
—————————–
In Abstraction, O’Keeffe treated three-dimensional forms as drawn lines, changing in width and thickness and enclosing rounded spaces that vary in diameter and size. The voids are as visually active as the lines that define them. This 1946 sculpture began as a small tabletop piece molded in clay. Beginning in 1979, several editions of the sculpture were made in various sizes and materials such as which-lacquered bronze and cast aluminum. O’Keeffe posed for Bruce Weber in front of a scaled-up version of Abstraction in a photograph on view nearby.

Georgia O'Keeffe Green, Yellow and Orangem 1960 Oil on canvas Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O'Keeffe, 87.104.3 --------------------------- Sepentine curves inspired by natural forms were a maintstay of O'Keeffe's ar from the earliest years of her career. Later on, she found new pictorial opportunities in the aerial view; which she discovered when she flew across the country and around the world in the lower-altitude propeller planes of the 1950s and 1960s. In this work, which suggests the ribbon-like meander of a Western river through and terrain, her reference to place is almost entirely subsumed by the force of the calligraphic, abstract designs.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Green, Yellow and Orangem 1960
Oil on canvas
Brooklyn Museum; Bequest of Georgia O’Keeffe, 87.104.3
—————————
Serpentine curves inspired by natural forms were a mainstay of O’Keeffe’s ar from the earliest years of her career. Later on, she found new pictorial opportunities in the aerial view; which she discovered when she flew across the country and around the world in the lower-altitude propeller planes of the 1950s and 1960s. In this work, which suggests the ribbon-like meander of a Western river through and terrain, her reference to place is almost entirely subsumed by the force of the calligraphic, abstract designs.

Georgia O'Keeffe Untitled (Abstraction Red Wave with Circle), 1979 Watercolor on paper Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'keeffe Foundation, 2006.05.493 -------------------------------- When macular degeneration seriously reduced the artist's eyesight, she still produced drawings with beautiful abstract marks that owed much to her study of Asian styles of calligraphy. With the aid of an assistant, she created over forty watercolors on paper, each consisting of just a few strokes and dots from a wide brush. These markings and the ways they define and interact with the white spaces around them form a late-life bookend to the 1910's abstractions that opened O'Keeffe career.

Georgia O’Keeffe
Untitled (Abstraction Red Wave with Circle), 1979
Watercolor on paper
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’keeffe Foundation, 2006.05.493
——————————–
When macular degeneration seriously reduced the artist’s eyesight, she still produced drawings with beautiful abstract marks that owed much to her study of Asian styles of calligraphy. With the aid of an assistant, she created over forty watercolors on paper, each consisting of just a few strokes and dots from a wide brush. These markings and the ways they define and interact with the white spaces around them form a late-life bookend to the 1910’s abstractions that opened O’Keeffe career.

Kimono and Belt, circa 1960s Black and white printed cotton and embroidered cotton crepe Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0611 ------------------------------------ This kimono has no label and is so distinctively designed that the artist may have purchased the material and had the garment custom-made. The robe has a unique belt: one side is made of the same fabric as the kimono, while the other side is a white embroidered cotton crepe that she may have recycled from one of her earliest kimonos. The swirl motif is a pattern found in eighteenth-century Japanese art that was later incorporated as a design element in European Art Nouveau.

Kimono and Belt, circa 1960s
Black and white printed cotton and embroidered cotton crepe
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0611
————————————
This kimono has no label and is so distinctively designed that the artist may have purchased the material and had the garment custom-made. The robe has a unique belt: one side is made of the same fabric as the kimono, while the other side is a white embroidered cotton crepe that she may have recycled from one of her earliest kimonos. The swirl motif is a pattern found in eighteenth-century Japanese art that was later incorporated as a design element in European Art Nouveau.

Kimono, circa 1900-1950 Black silk satin with woven pattern Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0426a-b Haori (Jacket), circa 1950s Black silk gauze Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0615 -------------------------------- One of these kimonos is woven with a subtle decorative pattern of floating dots and stylized leaves. The other is a shorter-length, men's jacketm or haori, traditionally worn over a longer kimono. It is summer-weight, made of a thin, translucent, gauze-weave fabric with horizontal lines called ro in Japanese. Ro allows the color beneath it—a garment or the wearer's arm—to light up the garment while creating an interesting moire effect of wavy lines

Kimono, circa 1900-1950
Black silk satin with woven pattern
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0426a-b
Haori (Jacket), circa 1950s
Black silk gauze
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0615
——————————–
One of these kimonos is woven with a subtle decorative pattern of floating dots and stylized leaves. The other is a shorter-length, men’s jacket or haori, traditionally worn over a longer kimono. It is summer-weight, made of a thin, translucent, gauze-weave fabric with horizontal lines called ro in Japanese. Ro allows the color beneath it—a garment or the wearer’s arm—to light up the garment while creating an interesting moire effect of wavy lines.

Bruce Weber American, born 1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1984 Gelatin silver print Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush ---------------------------------- For this formal portrait, the last anyone would make of her, the ninety-seven-year-old artist came up with a hybrid outfit fusing male with female and East with West. She put on a heavy, Japanese men's padded winter robe and topped it off with her well-worn vaquero hat. She added something white to emphasize the V-neck and her silver Alexander Calder pin to hold the front together. Weber framed her within the callifgraphic circles of her own abstract sculpture that echo the spiral letter O of her OK pin. In this costume, O'Keeffe looks away, a dignified, seemingly genderless elder.

Bruce Weber
American, born 1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1984
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush
———————————-
For this formal portrait, the last anyone would make of her, the ninety-seven-year-old artist came up with a hybrid outfit fusing male with female and East with West. She put on a heavy, Japanese men’s padded winter robe and topped it off with her well-worn vaquero hat. She added something white to emphasize the V-neck and her silver Alexander Calder pin to hold the front together. Weber framed her within the calligraphic circles of her own abstract sculpture that echo the spiral letter O of her OK pin. In this costume, O’Keeffe looks away, a dignified, seemingly genderless elder.

Padded Kimono (Tanzen), circa 1960s-70s Gray striped silk, black silk faille, cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0359 Inner garment: Kimono, circa 1960s-70s White cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000,03.0404 ------------------------------------ This is the gray Japanese kimono that O'Keeffe wore in front of Bruce Weber's camera. She acquired her first kimonos in the 1910s, when she could find them in New York's many emporia of imported Asian goods. Some were fashioned for the Western trade, some for domestic Japanese use. She may have also made one or two; commercial patterns for kimonos were readily available, and their basic T-shape made them relatively easy to sew. When O'Keeffe traveled to Asia she also bought kimonos, and in the late 1970s and 1980s she purchased others from a store in Santa Fe. She had women's and men's styles, and wore them in the Western manner, pulling them together with matching belts and narrow sashes rather than the traditional obi. She also overlapped the left side over the right side, rather than the other way around as the Japanese do.

Padded Kimono (Tanzen), circa 1960s-70s
Gray striped silk, black silk faille, cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0359
Inner garment:
Kimono, circa 1960s-70s
White cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000,03.0404
————————————
This is the gray Japanese kimono that O’Keeffe wore in front of Bruce Weber’s camera. She acquired her first kimonos in the 1910s, when she could find them in New York’s many emporia of imported Asian goods. Some were fashioned for the Western trade, some for domestic Japanese use. She may have also made one or two; commercial patterns for kimonos were readily available, and their basic T-shape made them relatively easy to sew.
When O’Keeffe traveled to Asia she also bought kimonos, and in the late 1970s and 1980s she purchased others from a store in Santa Fe. She had women’s and men’s styles, and wore them in the Western manner, pulling them together with matching belts and narrow sashes rather than the traditional obi. She also overlapped the left side over the right side, rather than the other way around as the Japanese do.

Paul Strand American, 1890-1976 Georgia O'Keeffe, Texas, 1918 Platinum print Philadelphia Museum of Art; The Paul Strand Collection, gift of Marjorie and Jeffrey Honickman, 2011, 2011-198-1 ------------------------------ Paul Strand, a young photographer supported and mentored by Stieglitz, was the first to capture O'Keeffe, sleepy-eyed and slightly disheveled, wearing a kimono. The fact that kimonos were sleep and bath wear for her gives this photograph its frisson; her letters to Strand show that the two were briefly attracted to one another and may have had a short-lived dalliance.

Paul Strand
American, 1890-1976
Georgia O’Keeffe, Texas, 1918
Platinum print
Philadelphia Museum of Art; The Paul Strand Collection, gift of Marjorie and Jeffrey Honickman, 2011, 2011-198-1
——————————
Paul Strand, a young photographer supported and mentored by Stieglitz, was the first to capture O’Keeffe, sleepy-eyed and slightly disheveled, wearing a kimono. The fact that kimonos were sleep and bath wear for her gives this photograph its frisson; her letters to Strand show that the two were briefly attracted to one another and may have had a short-lived dalliance.

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1918 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.13

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1918
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, through the generosity of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation and Jennifer and Joseph Duke, 1997, 1997.61.13

Alfred Stieglitz American, 1864-1946 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1918 Gelatin silver print National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.97 -------------------------------- In his first three years of photographing O'Keeffe, when their relationship was new, Stieglitz made a number of images of her nude, or partially clothed. He eroticized her body, emphasizing the flow of her arms, her long-fingered hands, her breasts, and her buttocks. Sometimes she wore a nearly transparent white kimono. The garment's associations in Western imagination with geishas and sexual exoticism amplify the intimate nature of these photographs. O'Keeffe did not wear a kimono again for a photographer until her photo session with Bruce Weber some sixty-five years later.

Alfred Stieglitz
American, 1864-1946
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1918
Gelatin silver print
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1980.70.97
——————————–
In his first three years of photographing O’Keeffe, when their relationship was new, Stieglitz made a number of images of her nude, or partially clothed. He eroticized her body, emphasizing the flow of her arms, her long-fingered hands, her breasts, and her buttocks. Sometimes she wore a nearly transparent white kimono. The garment’s associations in Western imagination with geishas and sexual exoticism amplify the intimate nature of these photographs. O’Keeffe did not wear a kimono again for a photographer until her photo session with Bruce Weber some sixty-five years later.

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1956 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Harry Kahn, 1986, 1986.1098

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1956
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Harry Kahn, 1986, 1986.1098

Celebrity

O’Keeffe always maintained a strong following among art lovers, and her stature as one of the country’s first and most significant modernists was secure. But in the late 1960s and 1970s her audience expanded and she became a celebrity, occupying a special place in the popular imagination. Feminists embraced her as a role model for women who wanted satisfying careers; to a youthful counterculture she became known not only as an artist, but also for her face, dress, and independent lifestyle. What Stieglitz had started in the 1920s, circulating photographs of her austerely dressed body and meditative face, continued after his death with a new generation of photographers constructing images of the artist as a dignified and mysterious older woman, a visionary of sorts, living what appeared to be a solitary, simple life in the American desert.

As O’Keeffe’s fame increased, she initiated two signature outfits: a simple wrap dress, and a tailored suit. She owned multiple versions of these ensembles, some in different colors, but for professional photographs she usually elected to wear them in black, encouraging the longtime perception that it was the only color in her wardrobe. In some portraits, she presented the remote, contemplative visage of a mystic or saint, replaying a favorite trope first developed with Stieglitz. For other photographers, steeped in the visual vocabulary of the fashion world and the professional studio, she adopted more stylized poses, many amid the adobe, bones, and rocks that marked her own domestic sphere. Always in black, she embodied a quintessential American toughness, plainness, and individualism, tempered by age into a state of grace. When she died in 1986, at the age of ninety-nine, she had become an American icon.

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1956 Gelatin silver print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.176

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1956
Gelatin silver print
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.176

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1956 Gelatin silver print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.175 ---------------------------------- In the most widely published of the images to emerge from Yousuf Karsh's photoshoot at Abiquiu, a black-suited O'Keeffe sits on a banquette beneath a deer skull that arcs over her body like a protective canopy. She turns away from the camera in her well-rehearsed posture of repose and contemplation.

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1956
Gelatin silver print
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.175
———————————-
In the most widely published of the images to emerge from Yousuf Karsh’s photoshoot at Abiquiu, a black-suited O’Keeffe sits on a banquette beneath a deer skull that arcs over her body like a protective canopy. She turns away from the camera in her well-rehearsed posture of repose and contemplation.

Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Georgia O'Keeffe at the Entrance of Her Abiquiu Home, 1967 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ---------------------------- Cecil Beaton was the first fashion photographer for whom O'Keeffe dressed in trousers. He came to photograph her for Vogue magazine, and she changed clothes two or three times for his camera. The outfit in this image includes black pants, a white blouse, and a wide-sleeved coat in wool boucle (fabric woven in loops). The striking image of her in the entryway of her Abiquiu house ran as a full-page reproduction for a March 1, 1967 article in Vogue, in which art critic E. C. Goossen argued, among other things, the older artist's relevance to younger New York paitners: "O'Keeffe's painting is crucial to any competent understanding of the origins of recent styles."

Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Georgia O’Keeffe at the Entrance of Her Abiquiu Home, 1967
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
—————————-
Cecil Beaton was the first fashion photographer for whom O’Keeffe dressed in trousers. He came to photograph her for Vogue magazine, and she changed clothes two or three times for his camera. The outfit in this image includes black pants, a white blouse, and a wide-sleeved coat in wool boucle (fabric woven in loops). The striking image of her in the entryway of her Abiquiu house ran as a full-page reproduction for a March 1, 1967 article in Vogue, in which art critic E. C. Goossen argued, among other things, the older artist’s relevance to younger New York painters: “O’Keeffe’s painting is crucial to any competent understanding of the origins of recent styles.”

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe at Ghost Ranch with Skull, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.827 ------------------------------ Philippe Halsman was the first professional New York photographer for whom O'Keeffe posed in New Mexico. Intrigued by the elegance of her dress and the foreignness of her remote desert setting, Halsman situated her amid adobe, bones, and rocks. His images recast the mediative poses established by the recently deceased Stieglitz, and began the work of inventing a new persona: a veritable :Saint Georgia" of the American desert.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe at Ghost Ranch with Skull, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.827
——————————
Philippe Halsman was the first professional New York photographer for whom O’Keeffe posed in New Mexico. Intrigued by the elegance of her dress and the foreignness of her remote desert setting, Halsman situated her amid adobe, bones, and rocks. His images recast the meditative poses established by the recently deceased Stieglitz, and began the work of inventing a new persona: a veritable :Saint Georgia” of the American desert.

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.826 ------------------------------ The caption for a reproduction of this image in Life magazine noted the synergy between the photograph's composition and the "style of many of her paintings."

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.826
——————————
The caption for a reproduction of this image in Life magazine noted the synergy between the photograph’s composition and the “style of many of her paintings.”

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; 2014.3.46 ------------------------------ When O'Keeffe removed her hat, Halsman framed a close-up of her scarfed head against a black background. The serious demeanor, the strict profile, and the covered head give this portrait the air of a Renaissance painting of a religious figure.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; 2014.3.46
——————————
When O’Keeffe removed her hat, Halsman framed a close-up of her scarfed head against a black background. The serious demeanor, the strict profile, and the covered head give this portrait the air of a Renaissance painting of a religious figure.

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1967 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.832 ------------------------------ When Halsman photographed her in New Mexico on a repeat visit in 1967, O'Keeffe reprised the outfit she had worn nearly twenty years earlier: a black suit, this one with a mandarin collar, and a white blouse. This time, he seemed more interested in conveying her ageless vigor and beauty, rather than the singularity of her life among bones and badlands.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1967
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.832
——————————
When Halsman photographed her in New Mexico on a repeat visit in 1967, O’Keeffe reprised the outfit she had worn nearly twenty years earlier: a black suit, this one with a mandarin collar, and a white blouse. This time, he seemed more interested in conveying her ageless vigor and beauty, rather than the singularity of her life among bones and badlands.

Emsley Suit (Jacket and Vest), 1983 Black wool Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.384 and 2000.3.386 ------------------------------------ Knize closed in New York in 1974, so O'Keeffe's final suit purchase was from Emsley, another high-end men's tailor in the city. In 1983, at the age of ninety-six, she ordered a black suit that included matching pants, vest, skirt, and jacket. Her wearing of pants with a matching jacket conformed to contemporary feminist practices that helped move women of all ages to adopt elegance, comfort, and politics of pants. Her pant suits were another iteration of an androgynous look she had embraced her entire life. Betty Blemo Yours Shop, Peninsula Hotel Shirt, circa 1950s Cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.243 Emsley Suit pants, 1983 Black wool Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.630

Emsley
Suit (Jacket and Vest), 1983
Black wool
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.384 and 2000.3.386
————————————
Knize closed in New York in 1974, so O’Keeffe’s final suit purchase was from Emsley, another high-end men’s tailor in the city. In 1983, at the age of ninety-six, she ordered a black suit that included matching pants, vest, skirt, and jacket. Her wearing of pants with a matching jacket conformed to contemporary feminist practices that helped move women of all ages to adopt elegance, comfort, and politics of pants. Her pant suits were another iteration of an androgynous look she had embraced her entire life.
Betty Blemo Yours Shop, Peninsula Hotel
Shirt, circa 1950s
Cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.243
Emsley
Suit pants, 1983
Black wool
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.630

Knize, Inc. Suit (Jacket and Skirt), 1968 Black wool twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.428 and 2000.3.380 ------------------------------------ O'Keeffe bought a number of her suits in New York City from the Viennese custom-tailoring house Knize located just off Fifth Avenue on 58th Street, near where she once lived with Stieglitz. The company produced men's clothes for famous clients, including the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, but it also catered to women, such as Marlene Dietrich, who wanted the distinctive material, cut, and fit of make two- and three-piece tailored suits. Lord & Taylor Men's (5th Avenue) Shirt, circa 1910-20 Cotton, mother-of-pearl buttons Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.239 -------------------------------------- As with her suits, O'Keeffe had multiples of white shirts and blouses, including basic men's dress shirts like this one, with pointed collars. Knize, Inc. Suit paints, 1968 Black wool twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.383

Knize, Inc.
Suit (Jacket and Skirt), 1968
Black wool twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.428 and 2000.3.380
————————————
O’Keeffe bought a number of her suits in New York City from the Viennese custom-tailoring house Knize located just off Fifth Avenue on 58th Street, near where she once lived with Stieglitz. The company produced men’s clothes for famous clients, including the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, but it also catered to women, such as Marlene Dietrich, who wanted the distinctive material, cut, and fit of make two- and three-piece tailored suits.
Lord & Taylor Men’s (5th Avenue)
Shirt, circa 1910-20
Cotton, mother-of-pearl buttons
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.239
————————————–
As with her suits, O’Keeffe had multiples of white shirts and blouses, including basic men’s dress shirts like this one, with pointed collars.
Knize, Inc.
Suit paints, 1968
Black wool twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.383

Knize, Inc. Suit (Jacket and Skirt), 1964 Black wool twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.381 and 2000.3.385 ------------------------------------ O'Keeffe owned nearly a dozen bespoke suits by the end of her life, made by custom men's tailors in Hong Kong and New York. While the wrap dresses elsewhere in this gallery became O'Keeffe's regional uniform for photographers visiting her in New Mexico, she routinely wore matching two- or three-piece tailored suits (she called them her "town clothes") when traveling to cities and on occasion when she entertained guest in New Mexico. M. Vernet White linen Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0600 --------------------------------------- This blouse recalls elements O'Keeffe featured in the blouses she made for herself in the 1920s and 1930s: a tie collar, vertical pintucks running up and down the front of the blouse, a bit of lace, and small mother-of-pearl buttons. he may have purchased the blouse in, a bit of lace, and small mother-of-pearl buttons. She may have purchased the in Paris on her first trip to Europe, in 1953.

Knize, Inc.
Suit (Jacket and Skirt), 1964
Black wool twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.381 and 2000.3.385
————————————
O’Keeffe owned nearly a dozen bespoke suits by the end of her life, made by custom men’s tailors in Hong Kong and New York. While the wrap dresses elsewhere in this gallery became O’Keeffe’s regional uniform for photographers visiting her in New Mexico, she routinely wore matching two- or three-piece tailored suits (she called them her “town clothes”) when traveling to cities and on occasion when she entertained guest in New Mexico.
M. Vernet
White linen
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0600
—————————————
This blouse recalls elements O’Keeffe featured in the blouses she made for herself in the 1920s and 1930s: a tie collar, vertical pintucks running up and down the front of the blouse, a bit of lace, and small mother-of-pearl buttons. he may have purchased the blouse in, a bit of lace, and small mother-of-pearl buttons. She may have purchased the in Paris on her first trip to Europe, in 1953.

Knize, Inc. Coat, 1955 Black wool twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.348 ------------------------------------ The construction and general look of this fitted custom-made coat recall traditional men's overcoats, but details like the wide shawl collar and angled flat pockets show the influence of high-style women's coats of the time. As seen in photographs elsewhere in this gallery, O'Keeffe wore this coat for her portrait sitting with Richard Avedon in 1958.

Knize, Inc.
Coat, 1955
Black wool twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.348
————————————
The construction and general look of this fitted custom-made coat recall traditional men’s overcoats, but details like the wide shawl collar and angled flat pockets show the influence of high-style women’s coats of the time. As seen in photographs elsewhere in this gallery, O’Keeffe wore this coat for her portrait sitting with Richard Avedon in 1958.

Elsa (Cristobal Balenciaga) Spanish, 1895-1972 Suit (Jacket and Skirt), circa 1950s Black wool and silk (?) faille Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.376 and 2000.03.377 --------------------------------------- It was probably on one of her trips to Spain in 1953 or 1954 that O'Keeffe purchased this classic and sculpturally elegant mid-1950s suit from Elsa, the name designer Cristobal Balenciaga used for salons in his home country. At some point, the zipper in the skirt needed replacement. Always thirfty, the artist used what was at hand, a teal-colored zipper that would not be seen under the jacket. Shirt, circa 1950s-60s Silk or polyester (?), mother-of-pearl buttons Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.292

Elsa (Cristobal Balenciaga)
Spanish, 1895-1972
Suit (Jacket and Skirt), circa 1950s
Black wool and silk (?) faille
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.376 and 2000.03.377
—————————————
It was probably on one of her trips to Spain in 1953 or 1954 that O’Keeffe purchased this classic and sculpturally elegant mid-1950s suit from Elsa, the name designer Cristobal Balenciaga used for salons in his home country. At some point, the zipper in the skirt needed replacement. Always thirfty, the artist used what was at hand, a teal-colored zipper that would not be seen under the jacket.
Shirt, circa 1950s-60s
Silk or polyester (?), mother-of-pearl buttons
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.292

Andy Warhol American, 1928-1987 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1980 Polacolor Type 108 Collection of the Alturas Foundation

Andy Warhol
American, 1928-1987
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1980
Polacolor Type 108
Collection of the Alturas Foundation

Andy Warhol American, 1928-1987 Georgia O'Keeffe, circa 1980 Synthetic polumer paint, diamond duet and silkscreen ink on canvas Collection of the Alturas Foundation -------------------------------------- Andy Warhol sought out O'Keeffe in the late 1970s and early 1980s, meeting her first at Ghost Ranch and then in New York. On one visit he took Polaroid images of her that became the basis for a silkscreened and painted portrait, noting his in diary that "Georgia was wearing a black thing around her head." He finished off the silkscreened image with diamond duet to make the surface of his celebrity subject sparkle.

Andy Warhol
American, 1928-1987
Georgia O’Keeffe, circa 1980
Synthetic polumer paint, diamond duet and silkscreen ink on canvas
Collection of the Alturas Foundation
————————————–
Andy Warhol sought out O’Keeffe in the late 1970s and early 1980s, meeting her first at Ghost Ranch and then in New York. On one visit he took Polaroid images of her that became the basis for a silkscreened and painted portrait, noting his in diary that “Georgia was wearing a black thing around her head.” He finished off the silkscreened image with diamond duet to make the surface of his celebrity subject sparkle.

Knize, Inc. Tailored Pants, 1955 Black wool twill Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0382 --------------------------------- These custom-made, tailored trousers were dressier than the pants O'Keeffe wore in her early years for outdoor work and hiking. Their ragged and much repaired state indicates how much she wore and loved them.

Knize, Inc.
Tailored Pants, 1955
Black wool twill
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0382
———————————
These custom-made, tailored trousers were dressier than the pants O’Keeffe wore in her early years for outdoor work and hiking. Their ragged and much repaired state indicates how much she wore and loved them.

Dan Budnik American, born 1933 Georgia O'Keeffe, Mirthful, Ghost Ranch Potting Shed, New Mexico, March 1975 (printed 2000) Gelatin silver print Private collection ------------------------------------ When photographer Dan Budnik visited O'Keeffe in 1975, she presented herself looking as dapper in black and white as she had forty years earlier wrapped up in Stieglitz's cape. She accessorized her pant suit with her Calder pin on a white blouse, flat black leather shoes, and, in a dandified touch, let the tip of a white handkerchief peep out from the breast pocket.

Dan Budnik
American, born 1933
Georgia O’Keeffe, Mirthful, Ghost Ranch Potting Shed, New Mexico, March 1975 (printed 2000)
Gelatin silver print
Private collection
————————————
When photographer Dan Budnik visited O’Keeffe in 1975, she presented herself looking as dapper in black and white as she had forty years earlier wrapped up in Stieglitz’s cape. She accessorized her pant suit with her Calder pin on a white blouse, flat black leather shoes, and, in a dandified touch, let the tip of a white handkerchief peep out from the breast pocket.

Christopher Makos American, born 1948 Contact Sheet #1 from Photo Shoot with Georgia O'Keeffe and Andy Warhol, 1983 Contact print Collection of Christopher Makos Christopher Makos American, born 1948 Contact Sheet #4 and #5 from Photo Shoot with Georgia O'Keeffe and Andy Warhol, 1983 Contact print Collection of Christopher Makos

Christopher Makos
American, born 1948
Contact Sheet #1 from Photo Shoot with Georgia O’Keeffe and Andy Warhol, 1983
Contact print
Collection of Christopher Makos
Christopher Makos
American, born 1948
Contact Sheet #4 and #5 from Photo Shoot with Georgia O’Keeffe and Andy Warhol, 1983
Contact print
Collection of Christopher Makos

Interview, September 1963 Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections ----------------------------------- O'Keeffe last visit with Warhol was at his so-called Factory in New York. She came with Juan Hamilton, who assisted her for the last years of her life. Warhol recorded a conversation among the three of them to publish in his magazine Interview, which was accomplished by photographs by Christopher Makos, a member of Warhol's circle.

Interview, September 1963
Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections
———————————–
O’Keeffe last visit with Warhol was at his so-called Factory in New York. She came with Juan Hamilton, who assisted her for the last years of her life. Warhol recorded a conversation among the three of them to publish in his magazine Interview, which was accomplished by photographs by Christopher Makos, a member of Warhol’s circle.

George F. Mobley American, born 1935 Georgia O'Keeffe and "Black Place III," 1980 Digital C-print George F. Mobley/National Geographic Creative --------------------------------- National Geographic photographer George Mobley paired O'Keeffe's dressed body with one of her Black Place paintings, capturing the shared modernist vocabulary of her art and life. Her strong silhouette and black and white custom-made suit ensemble reiterate the shapes and palette of her painted black hills. From the beginning of her time in the public eye, critics, like Helen Appleton Read in 1924, noted this consonance between O'Keeffe's appearance and her art: One has only to look at the artist and note her clear-cut features and extreme simplicity of manner and spirtuality, to realize that she could not paint in any other way. Each picture is in a way a portrait of herself.

George F. Mobley
American, born 1935
Georgia O’Keeffe and “Black Place III,” 1980
Digital C-print
George F. Mobley/National Geographic Creative
———————————
National Geographic photographer George Mobley paired O’Keeffe’s dressed body with one of her Black Place paintings, capturing the shared modernist vocabulary of her art and life. Her strong silhouette and black and white custom-made suit ensemble reiterate the shapes and palette of her painted black hills. From the beginning of her time in the public eye, critics, like Helen Appleton Read in 1924, noted this consonance between O’Keeffe’s appearance and her art:
One has only to look at the artist and note her clear-cut features and extreme simplicity of manner and spirituality, to realize that she could not paint in any other way. Each picture is in a way a portrait of herself.

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1956 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Harry Kahn, 1986, 1986.1098

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1956
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Harry Kahn, 1986, 1986.1098

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1956 Gelatin silver print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.176

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1956
Gelatin silver print
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.176

Yousuf Karsh Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, Seated, 1956 Gelatin silver print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.175 ---------------------------------------- In the most widely published of the images to emerge from Yousuf Karsh's photo shoot at Abiquiu, a black-suited O'Keeffe sits on a banquette beneath a deer skull that arcs over her body like a protective canopy. She turns away from the camera in her well-rehearsed posture or repose and contemplation.

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, Seated, 1956
Gelatin silver print
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Gift of Estrellita and Yousuf Karsh, 1996.175
—————————————-
In the most widely published of the images to emerge from Yousuf Karsh’s photo shoot at Abiquiu, a black-suited O’Keeffe sits on a banquette beneath a deer skull that arcs over her body like a protective canopy. She turns away from the camera in her well-rehearsed posture or repose and contemplation.

Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Georgia O'Keeffe at the Entrance of Her Abiquiu Home, 1967 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ---------------------------- Cecil Beaton was the first fashion photographer for whom O'Keeffe dressed in trousers. He came to photograph her for Vogue magazine, and she changed clothes two or three times for his camera. The outfit in this image includes black pants, a white blouse, and a wide-sleeved coat in wool boucle (fabric woven in loops). The striking image of her in the entryway of her Abiquiu house ran as a full-page reproduction for a March 1, 1967 article in Vogue, in which art critic E. C. Goossen argued, among other things, the older artist's relevance to younger New York paitners: "O'Keeffe's painting is crucial to any competent understanding of the origins of recent styles."

Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Georgia O’Keeffe at the Entrance of Her Abiquiu Home, 1967
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
—————————-
Cecil Beaton was the first fashion photographer for whom O’Keeffe dressed in trousers. He came to photograph her for Vogue magazine, and she changed clothes two or three times for his camera. The outfit in this image includes black pants, a white blouse, and a wide-sleeved coat in wool boucle (fabric woven in loops). The striking image of her in the entryway of her Abiquiu house ran as a full-page reproduction for a March 1, 1967 article in Vogue, in which art critic E. C. Goossen argued, among other things, the older artist’s relevance to younger New York paitners: “O’Keeffe’s painting is crucial to any competent understanding of the origins of recent styles.”

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe at Ghost Ranch with Skull, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.827 ------------------------------ Philippe Halsman was the first professional New York photographer for whom O'Keeffe posed in New Mexico. Intrigued by the elegance of her dress and the foreignness of her remote desert setting, Halsman situated her amid adobe, bones, and rocks. His images recast the mediative poses established by the recently deceased Stieglitz, and began the work of inventing a new persona: a veritable :Saint Georgia" of the American desert.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe at Ghost Ranch with Skull, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.827
——————————
Philippe Halsman was the first professional New York photographer for whom O’Keeffe posed in New Mexico. Intrigued by the elegance of her dress and the foreignness of her remote desert setting, Halsman situated her amid adobe, bones, and rocks. His images recast the mediative poses established by the recently deceased Stieglitz, and began the work of inventing a new persona: a veritable :Saint Georgia” of the American desert.

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; 2014.3.46 ------------------------------ When O'Keeffe removed her hat, Halsman framed a close-up of her scarfed head against a black background. The serious demeanor, the strict profile, and the covered head give this portrait the air of a Renaissance painting of a religious figure.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; 2014.3.46
——————————
When O’Keeffe removed her hat, Halsman framed a close-up of her scarfed head against a black background. The serious demeanor, the strict profile, and the covered head give this portrait the air of a Renaissance painting of a religious figure.

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.826 ------------------------------ The caption for a reproduction of this image in Life magazine noted the synergy between the photograph's composition and the "style of many of her paintings."

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.826
——————————
The caption for a reproduction of this image in Life magazine noted the synergy between the photograph’s composition and the “style of many of her paintings.”

Philippe Halsman American, born Latvia, 1906-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1967 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.832 ------------------------------ When Halsman photographed her in New Mexico on a repeat visit in 1967, O'Keeffe reprised the outfit she had worn nearly twenty years earlier: a black suit, this one with a mandarin collar, and a white blouse. This time, he seemed more interested in conveying her ageless vigor and beauty, rather than the singularity of her life among bones and badlands.

Philippe Halsman
American, born Latvia, 1906-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1967
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.832
——————————
When Halsman photographed her in New Mexico on a repeat visit in 1967, O’Keeffe reprised the outfit she had worn nearly twenty years earlier: a black suit, this one with a mandarin collar, and a white blouse. This time, he seemed more interested in conveying her ageless vigor and beauty, rather than the singularity of her life among bones and badlands.

When O'Keeffe found a shoe she liked, she would acquire it in multiples and in different colors, just as she did with her many wrap dresses. In the 1940s, she took her cues from Claire McCardell, who popularized ballet-inspired flats, with tiny ties. O'Keeffe wore versions made by Ferragamo and another design with a leaf-like pattern from Saks Fifth Avenue. Saks Fifth Avenue Shoes, circa early 1960s Cream suede Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0537a-b Fenton Perambulator, Saks Fifth Avenue Shoes, circa early 1960s Black suede Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0536a-b Salvatore Ferragamo Italian, 1898-1960 Shoes, circa 1957-65 Black suede Private collection Salvatore Ferragamo Italian, 1898-1960 Shoes, circa 1957-65 Light blue suede Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0528a-b Salvatore Ferragamo Italian, 1898-1960 Shoes, circa 1957-65 Black suede Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0521a-b Salvatore Ferragamo Italian, 1898-1960 Shoes, circa 1957-65 Red suede Private collection

When O’Keeffe found a shoe she liked, she would acquire it in multiples and in different colors, just as she did with her many wrap dresses. In the 1940s, she took her cues from Claire McCardell, who popularized ballet-inspired flats, with tiny ties. O’Keeffe wore versions made by Ferragamo and another design with a leaf-like pattern from Saks Fifth Avenue.
Saks Fifth Avenue
Shoes, circa early 1960s
Cream suede
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0537a-b
Fenton Perambulator, Saks Fifth Avenue
Shoes, circa early 1960s
Black suede
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0536a-b
Salvatore Ferragamo
Italian, 1898-1960
Shoes, circa 1957-65
Black suede
Private collection
Salvatore Ferragamo
Italian, 1898-1960
Shoes, circa 1957-65
Light blue suede
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0528a-b
Salvatore Ferragamo
Italian, 1898-1960
Shoes, circa 1957-65
Black suede
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.03.0521a-b
Salvatore Ferragamo
Italian, 1898-1960
Shoes, circa 1957-65
Red suede
Private collection

Tony Vaccaro Ameircan, born 1922 Georgia O'Keeffe with the Cheese, 1960 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.27 ----------------------------- While sharing a picnic with O'Keeffe in her car, Vaccaro captured this moment of levity when she peered at him through the hole in a piece of Swiss cheese.

Tony Vaccaro
Ameircan, born 1922
Georgia O’Keeffe with the Cheese, 1960
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.27
—————————–
While sharing a picnic with O’Keeffe in her car, Vaccaro captured this moment of levity when she peered at him through the hole in a piece of Swiss cheese.

Tony Vaccaro Ameircan, born 1922 Georgia O'Keeffe with Painting in the Desert, N.M., 1960 Chromogenic print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.2 ----------------------------- In this image, New York photographer Tony Vaccaro captured O'Keeffe holding the painting Pelvis Series, Red with Yellow on an easel so that it merges into the actual landscape. The simplicity of her dress appears in aesthetic harmony with her modern art. The shoot lasted a few days, during which she wore the same outfit: a black wrap dress layered over a similar white one, both cinched at the waist with her Aguilar belt. This was the first time she posed in this soon-to-be-iconic ensemble.

Tony Vaccaro
Ameircan, born 1922
Georgia O’Keeffe with Painting in the Desert, N.M., 1960
Chromogenic print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2007.3.2
—————————–
In this image, New York photographer Tony Vaccaro captured O’Keeffe holding the painting Pelvis Series, Red with Yellow on an easel so that it merges into the actual landscape. The simplicity of her dress appears in aesthetic harmony with her modern art.
The shoot lasted a few days, during which she wore the same outfit: a black wrap dress layered over a similar white one, both cinched at the waist with her Aguilar belt. This was the first time she posed in this soon-to-be-iconic ensemble.

Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 Georgia O'Keeffe Photographing the Chama Valley, New Mexico, 1961 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.983 ------------------------------- Photographer Todd Webb and O'Keeffe were very close friends, and he visited and stayed with often in New Mexico. Just as Stieglitz would constantly troll for good shots with O'Keeffe at Lake George, Webb was given the run of her New Mexico properties. Here, he captured her as she photographed the Chama River from a bird's-eye perspective. Like Ansel Adams, Webb typically caught a relaxed O'Keeffe, often wearing one of her signature wrap dresses, as she went about her daily activities: reading, cooking, hiking, or sitting on her porch.

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe Photographing the Chama Valley, New Mexico, 1961
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.983
——————————-
Photographer Todd Webb and O’Keeffe were very close friends, and he visited and stayed with often in New Mexico. Just as Stieglitz would constantly troll for good shots with O’Keeffe at Lake George, Webb was given the run of her New Mexico properties. Here, he captured her as she photographed the Chama River from a bird’s-eye perspective. Like Ansel Adams, Webb typically caught a relaxed O’Keeffe, often wearing one of her signature wrap dresses, as she went about her daily activities: reading, cooking, hiking, or sitting on her porch.

Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 Georgia O'Keeffe on Portal at the Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, 1964 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1010

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe on Portal at the Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, 1964
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1010

Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 Georgia O'Keeffe on Portal at the Ghost Ranch, circa 1960s Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1046

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
Georgia O’Keeffe on Portal at the Ghost Ranch, circa 1960s
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.6.1046

Malcolm Varon American, born 1932 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1977 Cibachrome prints Georgia O'Keeffe at Ninety: A Portfolio by Malcolm Varon (S.I.: Malcolm Varon, 1987) Portfolio edition, number 168 of an edition of 900 Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections, Gift of sue Renee Bernstein ------------------------------ Malcolm Varon met O'Keeffe when he photographed her artworks for the book Georgia O'Keeffe, published by Viking Press in 1976. She later agreed to pose for him at Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch.

Malcolm Varon
American, born 1932
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1977
Cibachrome prints
Georgia O’Keeffe at Ninety: A Portfolio by Malcolm Varon (S.I.: Malcolm Varon, 1987)
Portfolio edition, number 168 of an edition of 900
Brooklyn Museum Library, Special Collections,
Gift of sue Renee Bernstein
——————————
Malcolm Varon met O’Keeffe when he photographed her artworks for the book Georgia O’Keeffe, published by Viking Press in 1976. She later agreed to pose for him at Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch.

Laura Gilpin American, 1891-1979 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1953 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.38

Laura Gilpin
American, 1891-1979
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1953
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2014.3.38

Irving Penn American, 1917-2009 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1948 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2014.3.54 ------------------------------- O'Keeffe posed for one of Irving Penn's well-known "corner portraits" of artists, actors, and other celebrities. As the photographer recalled, the isolation of this studio device "seemed to comfort people, soothing them. The walls were a surface to lean on or push against. For me the picture possibilities were interesting; limiting the subjects' movement seemed to relieve me of part of the problem of holding on to them." O'Keeffe looks somewhat skeptical, and she is said not to have liked this portrait.

Irving Penn
American, 1917-2009
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1948
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2014.3.54
——————————-
O’Keeffe posed for one of Irving Penn’s well-known “corner portraits” of artists, actors, and other celebrities. As the photographer recalled, the isolation of this studio device “seemed to comfort people, soothing them. The walls were a surface to lean on or push against. For me the picture possibilities were interesting; limiting the subjects’ movement seemed to relieve me of part of the problem of holding on to them.” O’Keeffe looks somewhat skeptical, and she is said not to have liked this portrait.

Richard Avedon American, 1923-2004 Georgia O'Keeffe, Artist, New York City December 6, 1958, 1958 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of the artist, 2002, 2002.379.61 Richard Avedon American, 1923-2004 Georgia O'Keeffe, Artist, New York City December 6, 1958, 1958 Contact print Richard Avedon Foundation Richard Avedon American, 1923-2004 Georgia O'Keeffe, Artist, New York City December 6, 1958, 1958 Contact print Richard Avedon Foundation ------------------------------- For her shoot with Richard Avedon, O'Keeffe wore her black 1955 Knize overcoat, seen nearby in this gallery. The images in these two contact prints are reminiscent of earlier photographers' compositions. Stieglitz's emphasis on O'Keeffe's expressive hands, and Van Vechten's focus on the back of her head. The Avedon photographs on view here have never been published and are thus little known.

Richard Avedon
American, 1923-2004
Georgia O’Keeffe, Artist, New York City
December 6, 1958, 1958
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of the artist, 2002, 2002.379.61
Richard Avedon
American, 1923-2004
Georgia O’Keeffe, Artist, New York City
December 6, 1958, 1958
Contact print
Richard Avedon Foundation
Richard Avedon
American, 1923-2004
Georgia O’Keeffe, Artist, New York City
December 6, 1958, 1958
Contact print
Richard Avedon Foundation
——————————-
For her shoot with Richard Avedon, O’Keeffe wore her black 1955 Knize overcoat, seen nearby in this gallery. The images in these two contact prints are reminiscent of earlier photographers’ compositions. Stieglitz’s emphasis on O’Keeffe’s expressive hands, and Van Vechten’s focus on the back of her head. The Avedon photographs on view here have never been published and are thus little known.

Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86 Black cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.601 Inner garment: Carol Sarkisian (American, 1936-2013) Wrap Dress, circa 1970s White cotton with hook-and-eye sleeve closure Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.410 -------------------------------------- O'keeffe wrap dresses, which she often wore in layers or with a light blouse underneath, shaped her body into the form of a pyramid—lightly fitted above the waist and flared out below the belt. Like a kimono, they wrapped around her, but their fitted sleeves allowed her arms to move freely. The wrap dress was not only comfortable and easy to slip on and off; its simplicity allowed her to accessorize according to her own style, with one of her belts, her Calder pin, scarfs, or hats. She liked this design so much that it became something of a uniform for the next twenty years. She took a well-worn one apart and made a paper pattern from it so that local seamstresses could re-create it for her in different colors and materials. O'Keeffe bought her first wrap dresses from Neiman Marcus in Texas in the late 1950s. They were very basic: made of cotton, single-colored unlined, no buttons or zippers, only a matching belt. The design originated in light cover-ups that runway models wore behind the scenes; when Neiman Marcus introduced the "Model's Smock" (see illustration) as a casual day dress, it sold extremely well.

Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86 Black cotton Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.601 Inner garment: Carol Sarkisian (American, 1936-2013) Wrap Dress, circa 1970s White cotton with hook-and-eye sleeve closure Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.410 ————————————– O’keeffe wrap dresses, which she often wore in layers or with a light blouse underneath, shaped her body into the form of a pyramid—lightly fitted above the waist and flared out below the belt. Like a kimono, they wrapped around her, but their fitted sleeves allowed her arms to move freely. The wrap dress was not only comfortable and easy to slip on and off; its simplicity allowed her to accessorize according to her own style, with one of her belts, her Calder pin, scarfs, or hats. She liked this design so much that it became something of a uniform for the next twenty years. She took a well-worn one apart and made a paper pattern from it so that local seamstresses could re-create it for her in different colors and materials. O’Keeffe bought her first wrap dresses from Neiman Marcus in Texas in the late 1950s. They were very basic: made of cotton, single-colored unlined, no buttons or zippers, only a matching belt. The design originated in light cover-ups that runway models wore behind the scenes; when Neiman Marcus introduced the “Model’s Smock” (see illustration) as a casual day dress, it sold extremely well.

Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86 Black cotton or silk (?) Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.602 Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86 Black cotton or silk (?) Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.602 Sidran, Inc. Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1950s-60s Brown cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.419 Neiman Marcus "Model's Smock" Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1945-86 Pink cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.398a-b Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1950s-80s Light blue cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.411a-b Neiman Marcus Wrap Dress, circa 1950s Blue cotton Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.394

Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86
Black cotton or silk (?)
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.602
Wrap Dress, circa 1945-86
Black cotton or silk (?)
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.602
Sidran, Inc.
Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1950s-60s
Brown cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.419
Neiman Marcus
“Model’s Smock” Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1945-86
Pink cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.398a-b
Wrap Dress and Belt, circa 1950s-80s
Light blue cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.411a-b
Neiman Marcus
Wrap Dress, circa 1950s
Blue cotton
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2000.3.394

Bruce Weber American, born 1946 Georgia O'Keeffe's Robe, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1984 Gelatin silver print Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush ---------------------------------- Bruce Weber is the only photographer who featured the signature wrap dresses in a still life. He came upon them as they were hanging on a white door in the artist's studio, freshly ironed and on their way to the closet. An image of the uniform without its creator, it evokes how importrant understated clothes were to O'Keeffe's identity and style.

Bruce Weber
American, born 1946
Georgia O’Keeffe’s Robe, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1984
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush
———————————-
Bruce Weber is the only photographer who featured the signature wrap dresses in a still life. He came upon them as they were hanging on a white door in the artist’s studio, freshly ironed and on their way to the closet. An image of the uniform without its creator, it evokes how important understated clothes were to O’Keeffe’s identity and style.

Cecil Beaton English, 1904-1980 Georgia O;Keeffe in Black Hat, Pondering Animal Skull; Wearing Pin by Alexander Calder, 1967 Gelatin silver print Courtesy Conde Nast ------------------------ This whimsical portrait plays with the Old Master iconography of saints and philosophers meditating upon a human skull. O'Keeffe has stuck a feather into one of her animal heads and wryly contemplates it.

Cecil Beaton
English, 1904-1980
Georgia O;Keeffe in Black Hat, Pondering Animal Skull; Wearing Pin by Alexander Calder, 1967
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy Conde Nast
————————
This whimsical portrait plays with the Old Master iconography of saints and philosophers meditating upon a human skull. O’Keeffe has stuck a feather into one of her animal heads and wryly contemplates it.

Alexander Calder American, 1898-1976 Pin, circa 1938 Brass Private collection ----------------------------- Sculptor Alexander Calder, who also made hand-wrought metal jewelry, created this brass pin for O'Keeffe. It spells out the first two letters of her last name: a large spiral for the letter I, followed by the letter K. When the pin is worn horizontally, the letters are easily recognized as OK. But O'Keeffe preferred wearing the pin on the vertical, with the O at the top and the K below, so it read more like one of her organic abstractions, or a stylized plant form. The Calder pin first appears in a 1938 photograph of O'Keeffe, and from then on she wore it often for photo shoots. When her hair turned gray, she found the pin's copper color less flattering, and on a trip to India in 1959 she found a craftsman to make her a silver version, which she wore for the rest of her life. She was known to boast that the copy cost her only five dollars.

Alexander Calder
American, 1898-1976
Pin, circa 1938
Brass
Private collection
—————————–
Sculptor Alexander Calder, who also made hand-wrought metal jewelry, created this brass pin for O’Keeffe. It spells out the first two letters of her last name: a large spiral for the letter I, followed by the letter K. When the pin is worn horizontally, the letters are easily recognized as OK. But O’Keeffe preferred wearing the pin on the vertical, with the O at the top and the K below, so it read more like one of her organic abstractions, or a stylized plant form.
The Calder pin first appears in a 1938 photograph of O’Keeffe, and from then on she wore it often for photo shoots. When her hair turned gray, she found the pin’s copper color less flattering, and on a trip to India in 1959 she found a craftsman to make her a silver version, which she wore for the rest of her life. She was known to boast that the copy cost her only five dollars.

Ansel Adams American, 1902-1984 Georgia O'Keeffe, Carmel Highlands, California, 1981, printed 1982 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2003.03.08 ------------------------------ In 1981, O'Keeffe visited Ansel Adams in California for the last time. They were very dear friends and had known one another for over fifty years. He unfailingly got her to look directly at him and his camera for portraits that characteristically are straightforward and "natural," without the mythos that attended photographs of her as a solitary and remote figure of the desert.

Ansel Adams
American, 1902-1984
Georgia O’Keeffe, Carmel Highlands, California, 1981, printed 1982
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Juan and Anna Marie Hamilton, 2003.03.08
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In 1981, O’Keeffe visited Ansel Adams in California for the last time. They were very dear friends and had known one another for over fifty years. He unfailingly got her to look directly at him and his camera for portraits that characteristically are straightforward and “natural,” without the mythos that attended photographs of her as a solitary and remote figure of the desert.

Todd Webb American, 1905-2000 O'Keeffe on Portal, 1962 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0990 Juan Hamilton American, born 1945 Georgia O'Keeffe in Abiquiu House Studio, 1976 Gelatin silver print The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1977, 1977.664.2 -------------------------- When O'Keeffe knew a photographer well and was enjoying the moment, she would respond playfully to the camera. For Todd Webb and Juan Hamilton, both close friends, she threw a white blanket over her head, imitating the customs of the Pueblo Native Americans in northern New Mexico, who traditionally wore blankets in the same fashion.

Todd Webb
American, 1905-2000
O’Keeffe on Portal, 1962
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0990
Juan Hamilton
American, born 1945
Georgia O’Keeffe in Abiquiu House Studio, 1976
Gelatin silver print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1977, 1977.664.2
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When O’Keeffe knew a photographer well and was enjoying the moment, she would respond playfully to the camera. For Todd Webb and Juan Hamilton, both close friends, she threw a white blanket over her head, imitating the customs of the Pueblo Native Americans in northern New Mexico, who traditionally wore blankets in the same fashion.

Attributed to Zoe de Salle "Helmet" Hat, circa 1942 Black wool Private collection ----------------------------- O'Keeffe probably bought this unusual hat from New York designer Zoe de Salle, who also made the black cape on view in another gallery in the exhibition. De Salle called the design a "wool helmet," referring to what aviators were wearing in combat during World War II.

Attributed to Zoe de Salle
“Helmet” Hat, circa 1942
Black wool
Private collection
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O’Keeffe probably bought this unusual hat from New York designer Zoe de Salle, who also made the black cape on view in another gallery in the exhibition. De Salle called the design a “wool helmet,” referring to what aviators were wearing in combat during World War II.

George Daniell American, 1911-2002 Georgia O'Keeffe, 1952 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2014.03.025 -------------------------------- When freelance photographer George Daniell came to Ghost Ranch, the artist was dressed in a black suit and an unusual hat (on view nearby). A black hood came down over her shoulders and, like a helmet, left a peak of cloth on either side of her head and a narrow visor over the forehead. When asked about the headdress much later, Daniell said he know nothing about it, only that O'Keeffe was wearing it when he arrived. Daniell, like Halsman before him, posed her in a bone-filled corner of the patio, a strange and unearthly figure.

George Daniell
American, 1911-2002
Georgia O’Keeffe, 1952
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2014.03.025
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When freelance photographer George Daniell came to Ghost Ranch, the artist was dressed in a black suit and an unusual hat (on view nearby). A black hood came down over her shoulders and, like a helmet, left a peak of cloth on either side of her head and a narrow visor over the forehead. When asked about the headdress much later, Daniell said he know nothing about it, only that O’Keeffe was wearing it when he arrived. Daniell, like Halsman before him, posed her in a bone-filled corner of the patio, a strange and unearthly figure.

George Daniell American, 1911-2002 Portrait of Georgia O'Keeffe, 1951 Gelatin silver print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Mariann Wells, 1997.08.01 -------------------------------- In another pose for Daniell, this one in the patio at Abiquiu, O'Keeffe turns her black-hooded head away from the camera, and sharp-edged, raking shadows cut across the adobe walls. The strong geometry of this photograph is similar to several of her own abstracted paintings of the patio.

George Daniell
American, 1911-2002
Portrait of Georgia O’Keeffe, 1951
Gelatin silver print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of Mariann Wells, 1997.08.01
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In another pose for Daniell, this one in the patio at Abiquiu, O’Keeffe turns her black-hooded head away from the camera, and sharp-edged, raking shadows cut across the adobe walls. The strong geometry of this photograph is similar to several of her own abstracted paintings of the patio.

Mary E. Nichols American, born 1948 Georgia O'Keeffe in Abiquiu Patio, 1980 Chromogenic print Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O'Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0953 -------------------------------- For Mary Nichols, a young photographer on assignment for Architectural Digest, O'Keeffe dressed in a three-piece pant suit accessorized with her Calder pin and one of her unusual headdresses. Nichols, like so many photographers before her, chose to underline the artist's regional identification with the Southwest, surrounding her with adobe and some of her rocks.

Mary E. Nichols
American, born 1948
Georgia O’Keeffe in Abiquiu Patio, 1980
Chromogenic print
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gift of The Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, 2006.06.0953
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For Mary Nichols, a young photographer on assignment for Architectural Digest, O’Keeffe dressed in a three-piece pant suit accessorized with her Calder pin and one of her unusual headdresses. Nichols, like so many photographers before her, chose to underline the artist’s regional identification with the Southwest, surrounding her with adobe and some of her rocks.

Bruce Weber American, born 1946 Georgia O'Keeffe Holding Skull, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1980 Gelatin silver print Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush ----------------------------------- Bruce Weber made portraits of O'Keeffe on two different occasions, in 1980 and 1984. For his first visit, she posed as she had been doing for twenty years, in a black wrap dress, seated against bones and firewood at Ghost Ranch. Weber made a close still life of one of her hands holding a skull, the bottom of her V-neck, her Calder pin, and a bit of her Aguilar belt—all the elements that made up her signature appearance. Even in fragmentary form, O'Keeffe is recognizable.

Bruce Weber
American, born 1946
Georgia O’Keeffe Holding Skull, Abiquiu, New Mexico, 1980
Gelatin silver print
Courtesy of Bruce Weber and Nan Bush
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Bruce Weber made portraits of O’Keeffe on two different occasions, in 1980 and 1984. For his first visit, she posed as she had been doing for twenty years, in a black wrap dress, seated against bones and firewood at Ghost Ranch. Weber made a close still life of one of her hands holding a skull, the bottom of her V-neck, her Calder pin, and a bit of her Aguilar belt—all the elements that made up her signature appearance. Even in fragmentary form, O’Keeffe is recognizable.