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Georgia O'Keeffe and Andy Warhol: Flowers of Distinction

May 13, 2005 - January 8, 2006


Georgia O'Keeffe and Andy Warhol: Flowers of Distinction, organized by Museum curator Barbara Buhler Lynes, brings together approximately 40 depictions of flowers by two of America's most celebrated and popular artists. The exhibition opens on Friday, May 13, 2005, and will remain on view through Sunday, January 8, 2006.

"It's unusual to see this many flower pieces by each artist, and to see this number of paintings together and in relationship with one another is unique," says Lynes. "Flowers of Distinction demonstrates how O'Keeffe's and Warhol's paintings of the same subject, which represent very different moments in the history of American modernism, allowed them to both position and distinguish themselves within an age-old tradition of flower painting."

O'Keeffe emerged as a significant artist in the 1910s, Warhol in the 1960s. O'Keeffe is known as an early American Modernist whose work, along with that of Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley, and John Marin, was championed and promoted by photographer Alfred Stieglitz, America's first advocate of modern art.

Andy Warhol is one of the leading figures of the American pop art movement. His sources derive from popular culture, and for the most part he appropriated subjects such as soup cans and Coca-Cola bottles. That he addressed flowers at all seems something of an aberration in his work. As he organized and manipulated this subject, he sometimes used the silk-screen process to create numerous images of the same flower that vary dramatically in size. At another time he produced a series of prints, each of a different flower. He emphasized process and repetition and thus challenged long-held ideas about the role of the artist.

The Warhol images, which are among his least-known and least-studied works, have been loaned by The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and the Sonnabend Gallery in New York. They range in date from the 1960s, when Warhol first emerged as a painter, to 1986, and represent the surprisingly various and often whimsical ways in which Warhol dealt with this subject. They include Do It Yourself (Flowers) of 1962; examples from his best-known series of silk-screen paintings; Flowers, of 1964 and 1965; hand-colored prints of the 1970s; and several lyrical and lively silk-screen Flowers of 1986.

Flowers are among O'Keeffe's best-known works. Those in the exhibition are from the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum's permanent collection, with the exception of four that have been loaned from private collections. Included are the never-before-seen and earliest-known flower painting by O'Keeffe, a watercolor of 1903, and her decidedly provocative abstract flower pastel of the late 1910s, Blue Flower. Also included are numerous examples of her depictions of this subject in oil from the 1920s and 1930s, the two decades in which she explored this theme most frequently, moving easily between representation and abstraction.

A catalogue accompanies the exhibition and will be available at the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Shop. The contributors to the catalogue are Barbara Buhler Lynes, Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Curator and the Emily Fisher Landau Director of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Research Center; Heather Hole, Assistant Curator, Georgia O'Keeffe Museum; Neil Printz, editor of the AndyWarhol catalogue raisonné; and John Smith, Assistant Director for Collections, Exhibitions, and Research at The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh.


About the Curator

Barbara Buhler Lynes is curator of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, and the Emily Fisher Landau director of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Research Center. Lynes, who comes to Santa Fe from Maryland, has been integrally involved with the Museum since before its inception and was named Curator of the Collection in its early stages. With doctoral degrees in French literature and in art history, Lynes has lectured widely and has written extensively about the artist and her work. Lynes' publications include, among others, O'Keeffe, Stieglitz and the Critics, 1916-1929 , University of Chicago Press, 1991; Georgia O'Keeffe, Rizzoli International Publications, Inc., 1993; and Georgia O'Keeffe: Catalogue Raisonné, Yale Univeristy Press, 1999. She is a member of the Association for Historians of American Art, the Catalogue Raisonné Scholars Association, and the College Art Association.



(above: Georgia O'Keeffe, Petunia No. 2, 1924. oil on canvas, 36 x 30 inches. Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. Gift of The Burnett Foundation and Gerald and Kathleen Peters. © Georgia O'Keeffe Museum)

Editor's note: readers may also enjoy:

approximately 280 other Resource Library articles and essays citing Georgia O'Keeffe, including these selected texts:

approximately 200 other Resource Library articles and essays citing Andy Warhol, including:

various articles on the Pop Art movement

online audio:

The National Gallery of Art offers on its web site O'Keeffe on Paper. Barbara Buhler Lynes, co-curator of the exhibition, author of Georgia O'Keeffe: Catalogue Raisonné, curator of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, and Emily Fisher Landau Director of the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Research Center, discuss new insights on the stunning watercolors, charcoals, and pastels presented in the exhibition of O'Keeffe's most innovative works on paper. Aired May 6, 2000. (description courtesy NGA)

online video:

The WGBH/Boston Forum Network includes a number of videos on Art and Architecture. Partners include a number of Boston-area museums, colleges, universities and other cultural organizations. The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston partnered with the Forum Network for Modern Art in America, (43 minutes) in which Heather Cotter, Museum of Fine Arts Gallery Lecturer, gives an overview of the roots of American modern art using examples from the Museum's collection. This talk in the galleries of the Museum of Fine Arts investigates the foundations of modern art in America, focusing on works by Georgia O'Keefe, Arthur Dove, Charles Sheeler, and Stuart Davis. [September 28, 2003]

VHS videos:

Georgia O'Keeffe was produced by Perry Miller Adato in 1977 by WNET for The Originals: Women in Art series and distributed by the Educational Broadcasting Corporation. The video is 59 minutes long and is self-narrated by O'Keeffe. The artist talks candidly about her work and life, showing how nature and the mountains and desert of New Mexico figure prominently in her work. The video includes comments by sculptor Juan Hamilton, who was her assistant, and critics Barbara Rose and Daniel Catton Rich.


Georgia O'Keeffe: A Life in Art Adato, Perry Miller, producer and director. A 2002 video from the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe. The Museum's orientation film created by the acclaimed, award-winning filmaker Perry Miller Adato. The film presents O'Keeffe's life and the origins and development of her art. VHS and DVD.





Georgia O'Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz 60 minute / 1998 / CTC - "Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe, companions in life and art in spite of a 23-year age difference, symbolize the juxtapositions characteristics of the American modernist period. In this program, Professor Wanda Corn from Stanford University uses O'Keeffe's paintings and Stieglitz's photographs to show the impact each had on the other's work and on the evolution of American art. Corn emphasizes the artistic collaboration between the couple and points out O'Keeffe's modernist style of abstraction in her use of strong form and color and unusual vantage point on a traditional subject. As O'Keeffe is influenced by her sojourns to New Mexico, so does her art consciously change in subject matter as a reflection of her strong artistic spirit and determination to reconnect with traditional America." Quotes are from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Alfred Stieglitz: The Eloquent Eye is a 90 minute 2000 American Masters series WNET video directed by Perry Miller Adato. From the Back Cover: "Stieglitz, who is revered as one of the most innovative photographers of the 20th century, played a primary role in fostering new talent. Through his three galleries in New York City, he mentored emerging artists such as Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley, Ansel Adams, Eliot Porter and Georgia O'Keeffe; and introduced avant-garde Europeans such as Henri Matisse, Paul Cezanne, Auguste Rodin and Pablo Picasso.... This revealing look at "The Father of Modern Photography" features a rare interview with Georgia O'Keeffe, Stieglitz's wife and muse, as well as archival footage of other artistic giants he inspired, including Edward Steichen and John Marin. Additionally, the film presents countless images from the Stieglitz archives, ranging from early European peasant life to later views of New York's urban landscape." VHS/DVD




Andy Warhol is a 77 minute 1987 video which was the first major profile of the American Pop-Art cult leader since his death in 1987. It covers Warhol's life and work through interviews, film clips and conversations with members of his family and his "superstar" friends. Featured are conversations with a dozen of his closest associates -- including Ondlne, Viva, John Giorno, Brlgid Berlin and others -- discussing his family, colleagues, the art world, and his impact on society.The video was produced by RM Arts; London Weekend Television




Andy Warhol: The Complete Picture was released in 2003 and is a 105 minute documentary on 2 tapes from Bfs Entertainment. Directed by Chris Rodley. Warhol was just as famous for being "Andy Warhol" as he was for his artwork. He was a celebrity's celebrity, yet he was also a shy, prolific artist who worked in everything from painting to film to music. This documentary provides a definitive look at Warhol's life and his creative process. Features rare audiotapes and films from the Warhol Foundation Archives in addition to interviews with Debbie Harry, Dennis Hopper and more. "Exhilaratingly thorough, a Complete Oxford English Dictionary of Warhol" (The Times). DVD :includes a Warhol chronology, filmography and more.



Superstar - The Life & Times of Andy Warhol is an 87 minute 1991 documentary directed by Chuck Workman from Marylin Lewis Entertainment, released through Winstar Home Entertainment. A documentary about the painter Andy Warhol which traces his life from Pittsburgh schoolboy to pop art legend. The film includes a behind the scenes look at "Factory" life and several enigmatic interviews given by Warhol over the years, as well as an array of images from Warhol's art and films.





Warhol is a 79 minute video which offers a profile of Andy Warhol's life and work examines a career that spanned painting, film, publishing, rock music, and television.






Biography: Andy Warhol. This video covers Pop artist Andy Warhol's life and work, from his paintings based on comic strips and photos of public personalities to his painted replicas of Campbell's Soup cans. 50 minutes. (quote courtesy Plains Art Msueum)


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Read more articles and essays concerning this institutional source by visiting the sub-index page for the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum in Resource Library.

For further biographical information on selected artists cited in this article please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.

rev. 10/26/05, 9/10/10, 12/16/10

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