A Love Letter To

Georgia O’Keeffe

4 years ago by

Georgia O’Keeffe

Chère Georgia,

Je voudrais juste vous dire que vous assurez grave.

Je suis allée voir l’exposition consacrée à votre vie au Brooklyn Museum le week-end dernier, et au-delà de votre art, j’ai été bluffée par votre charisme, l’aura que vous dégagiez et que vous cultiviez. Tout ce qui a contribué à vos décisions d’artiste, dès votre plus jeune âge, et qui a résisté à l’épreuve de la mort, est incroyable. Des vêtements que vous faisiez vous-même (et qui semblent directement inspirés des moodboards de The Row), à la façon que vous aviez de vous faire immortaliser de noir vêtue, tout cela a contribué à forger une image.

Une partie de l’exposition intitulée « Célébrité » comprenait des photos de vous prises par d’autres, depuis feu votre amour Alfred Stieglitz jusqu’à Bruce Weber en passant par Andy Warhol. Ce qui m’a impressionnée, c’est votre volonté de maîtriser votre propre image à une époque où les gens se précipitaient pour vous découvrir. On ne saura jamais si ce personnage que vous présentiez était soigneusement calculé ou s’il correspondait authentiquement à votre personnalité, mais je vous applaudis d’avoir toujours su garder la maîtrise de la manière dont vous étiez perçue. Et aussi d’avoir créé de belles œuvres et vécu une vie si inspirante.

Avec toute mon admiration,
Emily

9 comments

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  • I went and saw her home & studio in Abiquiu, NM last fall and was blown away by all the same things. I had always loved her but being in her home I just couldn’t get over her and still haven’t. Such an inspiring artist and WOMAN. I wish I could see the exhibit but I am southern cali. C’est la vie. I heart this letter a lot. (sigh)

  • There’s a photo of her and Orwell Cox (if I remember his name… it’s dated 1937) on the wall in my favourite room at the inn we stay at when we ski. He’s looking down and she’s got this captivating smile (smugly satisfied in a nice way, knowing and experienced) as though she just made him blush and it was either too easy or very difficult.

  • Emily,

    I am so jealous that I can’t get to this exhibit. My son, his girlfriend and her family went to see it this past weekend too. It sounds amazing. Fashion and art, what could be better?

    Jealousy aside, I’m also grateful for this post — we all need to support the arts these days and always. And there’s no better way to practice a bit of self care than losing yourself in art.

  • Emily 24 mars 2017, 2:28

    Judith!

    I wish you could make it over too–it really is so special! That said, the book from the exhibition is really good, I’d highly recommend it!
    https://shop.brooklynmuseum.org/products/georgia-okeeffe-living-modern-catalouge
    x Emily

  • Just like Janelle, Abiquiu is one of my best travel memory, such a peaceful place. Life at his purest, simple and rich at the same time.

  • Georgia O’Keefe was less about brand than about privacy, independence, and total devotion to her art.

  • Welcome aboard…

  • Agreed, Anna.
    O’Keeffe was an artist, first and foremost. She broke new ground, and remained true to herself and her vision, her entire life. It wasn’t about « branding. »
    Emily, you might want to read her letters – to get a deeper sense of what motivated and inspired this remarkable human…

  • Karen Simmons 2 avril 2017, 5:49 / Répondre

    Concur with Anna, Dana. ‘Branding’ didn’t exist, and her mode of dress had nothing to do with any sort of ‘fashion statement’. All that O’Keeffe did went against societal norms of who she was expected to be as a woman, an artist, a partner. To describe her in such terms as a ‘badass’, ‘celebrity’, etc, is a little frustrating. Downplays her achievements into a sound byte for social media, although that, I am sure, is not the intent. « If this persona was carefully calculated or the most authentic version of yourself » … It was both. It was exactly who she was, the most authentic version OF self, refined to that one pure expression of the artist and woman combined – and something that can’t be purchased at The Row.

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