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Podcast #17: Why Study Georgia O’Keeffe

Deanna & Julie discuss Georgia O’Keeffe: Who was she? What were her paintings like? Why should we study her? Join us as we chat about the life and works of the Mother of American Modernism and grow to truly appreciate her dedication to the arts.

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Who was Georgia O’Keeffe?

Georgia O'Keeffe


  • Born on Nov. 15, 1887
  • She knew at 10 years old that she wanted to be an artist
  • Attended Art School
  • Discovered by Alfred Stieglitz, who later became her husband
  • Live part time in New York and part time in northern New Mexico
  • She actively managed her art career and her public image
  • Her art was appreciated and liked in her time and after her death
  • Died very wealthy at 98 years old on Mar 6, 1986

What was O’Keefe’s Art Like?

  • Modern
  • Influenced by Precisionsim, Futurism, Constructivism, Cubism, and Surrealism
  • Very little influence seen from Historical events (WWI, Depression, WWII, Civil Rights…)
  • Mostly still life and landscapes (rarely painted people)
  • Common subjects include flowers, animal skulls, New Mexico landscape, and New York City scapes
  • Her paintings often use a limited number of colors, but use the full value range (lights and darks) of one or more colors.

Georgia O'Keeffe

Why Study O’Keeffe?

  • To understand art in American- she was the “Mother of American Modernism”
  • To help us be part of our own culture- Her paintings are frequently referred to
  • To discuss “what is abstract art”
  • To learn to appreciate abstract art
  • To help us glimpse how the inner circle of artists in New York worked
  • To give us practice creating tones

Things we mention:

O’Keeffe’s Art we Mentioned:

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