Georgia O’Keeffe and the Faraway: Nature and Image at The National Cowgirl Museum

. February 16, 2010

Fort Worth, Texas – The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame announced the never before seen Georgia O’Keeffe and the Faraway: Nature and Image exhibition, which will be displayed in Fort Worth, Texas, open through September 6th. The exhibition, a collaboration between the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame and the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, explores the relationship that artist and Cowgirl Hall of Fame Honoree O’Keeffe had with nature through her camping experiences and artifacts.


Georgia O’Keeffe, “Black Place, Grey and Pink”, 1949. Oil on canvas, 36 x 48 inches. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. Gift of The Burnett Foundation (1997.06.030). ©Georgia O’Keeffe Museum

The two museums spent more than two years creating the exhibition in which visitors will find O’Keeffe’s personal effects, including clothing, letters, drawings and camping equipment, displayed alongside her artwork. This union of artistry and personal belongings is recognized nationally as an endeavor that harbors the art, geography, photography and artifacts in an effort to understand how O’Keeffe explored the American West through camping and hiking in a variety of environments.

“It is terribly exciting for our Museum to be able to first display this fresh look at the brilliance of Georgia O’Keeffe,” said Patricia Riley, executive director of the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. “Our mission is to promote the women of the West, and we are the first history museum to ever curate an O’Keeffe exhibition. In addition, this is the first time in a decade that a major O’Keeffe show has been presented in the state of Texas.”

The exhibition begins with the artist’s early camping years as a young teacher in Virginia. The visitor then progresses to an area reserved for her work in New Mexico and photographs taken by Ansel Adams, who spent several trips camping with O’Keeffe. After viewing some of the artwork on loan from the Amon Carter Museum and the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, guests can explore a significant location in O’Keeffe’s camping experience known as the “Black Place.” This specific area will give visitors the chance to immerse themselves in the site through camping displays, a large scenic photograph of the area, and through a video documentary. The exhibition then transitions to the “White Place,” a remote location near Abiquiu, New Mexico, and includes a sketchbook completed by O’Keeffe of this area.

The National Cowgirl Museum exhibition is unique in that it offers a perspective in which visitors can view O’Keeffe alongside the other extraordinary women who came and lived in the West, and made a difference. The very existence of someone like Georgia O’Keeffe, camping and creating art in the Southwest, is an indication of the previous lack of knowledge about the Western female experience. As an American artist, she was responsible both for bringing a new vision of Modernism to the world, and for revealing the infinitely interesting natural side of New Mexico and Texas.

“O’Keeffe’s life embodied those qualities that go into the word cowgirl,” said Director of Exhibits and Education Diana Vela. “She dedicated her life to something she valued, and in the way she absorbed the natural elements in northern New Mexico, she exemplified those same qualities that made the West, and defined our women.”

O’Keeffe was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 1991. Other inductees that year included Nancy Sheppard, Jonnie Jonckowski and Mary Ann “Molly” Goodnight.

Patricia Riley said: “Georgia O’Keeffe was courageous and innovative; she did what she loved and loved what she did. As an institution, we are demonstrating with this exhibition that there remains much to be shared with the public about the exciting women who have been named Honorees in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame.”

About the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame

The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame honors and celebrates women, past and present, whose lives exemplify the courage, resilience, and independence that helped shape the American West, and fosters an appreciation of the ideals and spirit of self-reliance they inspire. Open Monday through Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., admission is $10 for adults ages 13 and up and $8 for children ages 3 to 12 and senior citizens. Group rates and docent tours are available with two-week advance reservations. For more information please call (817) 336-4475 or (800) 476-FAME, or visit www.cowgirl.net

Category: Fine Art

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