Tate Modern presents the largest retrospective of modernist painter Georgia O’Keeffe ever to be shown outside of America. Marking a century since O’Keeffe’s debut in New York in 1916, it is the first UK exhibition of her work for over twenty years.
Widely recognised as a founding figure of American modernism, O’Keeffe gained a central position in leading art circles between the 1910s and the 1970s. She was also claimed as an important pioneer by feminist artists of the 1970s. Spanning the six decades in which O’Keeffe was at her most productive and featuring over 100 major works, the exhibition charts the progression of her practice from her early abstract experiments to her late works, aiming to dispel the clichés that persist about the artist and her painting.
Opening with the moment of her first showings at ‘291’ gallery in New York in 1916 and 1917, the exhibition features O’Keeffe’s earliest mature works made while she was working as a teacher in Virginia and Texas. Charcoals such as Special No.9 1915 andEarly No. 2 1915 are shown alongside a select group of highly coloured watercolours and oils, such as Sunrise 1916 and Blue and Green Music 1919.
A room in the exhibition considers O’Keeffe’s professional and personal relationship with Alfred Stieglitz (1864-1946); photographer, modern art promoter and the artist’s husband. While Stieglitz increased O’Keeffe’s access to the most current developments in avant-garde art, she employed these influences and opportunities to her own objectives. Her keen intellect and resolute character created a fruitful relationship that was, though sometimes conflictive, one of reciprocal influence and exchange.
Despite the great thought behind each piece of work this exhibition is fantastic for art novices. Her use of shape and colour so pleasing and beautiful. We can’t help thinking how nice each one would look on a Bookblock Original Notebook, but perhaps the walls of grand galleries are a more fitting location for her work then a humble journal
Show runs: 6 July – 30 October 2016
Open daily 10.00 – 18.00 and until 22.00 on Friday and Saturday