Most likely O'Keeffe has been on my mind lately because of the recent adventures of my friends Adam and Alicia Rico of Bows and Arrows Florals in Dallas, TX. Known for their distinctive style and ability to be always one step ahead, Bows and Arrows are currently hosting educational floral workshops in culturally rich locales such as Ghost Ranch. (O'Keefee's dude ranch in the high desert of New Mexico)
"Georgia O’Keeffe is the best known and most successful American woman painter; her larger-than-life, almost abstract paintings of flowers are world famous. But it was not only as an artist that she drew attention to herself. Her tremendous personal magnetism fascinated people, for she was “exceptionally beautiful and spontaneous, combined with spiritual and emotional clarity and a wonderful intensity with which she enjoyed every moment of her life to the full.” (Stieglitz). She was quick-witted and could be staggeringly direct. For the younger generation she was the epitome of an independent, creative woman who single-mindedly went her own way, never willing to make compromises which might hinder her in her painting." -fembio.org
She loved color and thought that 'it made life worth living' yet, her living spaces remained simple, earthen and high in contrast. Her passion for color, detail, and fauna was seceded only by her love of the stark white bones that she gathered and then shipped back to New York to study and paint during the winter. She thought these remnants to be "more alive than the animals themselves." In her last years she began to work with clay feeling that the artist could train the medium to come alive or to speak. Georgia was incredibly well traveled and hoped to live until she was one hundred and twenty-five.
A woman after my own heart.
Winter in Seattle has come once again making me feel connected to this barn in a way I can only describe as collaborative. I want to rub elbows with this barn, bear hug this barn, and put wool socks with hand warmers in this barn's boots. For it, I would sacrifice my Seattle staple (my mustard yellow beanie) so that this barn can keep the wind out of it's ears and the rain off its roof.
How is your life an extension of the art that you hope to create? This week can you become less reactionary and more intentional with how you channel your emotions?
I encourage you to learn more about Georgia O'Keeffe and in doing so you may find that you see yourself and the world in a whole new way.