It is always fascinating to see how artists change and develop over their lifetime. This story explores the creative inspirations and discoveries made by the artist Georgia O'Keeffe. She started by teaching art classes in South Carolina and then began painting imaginary shapes and describing emotions with charcoal. She had her own way of seeing things. She painted the ordinary things around her- apples, skies, barns, houses, New York buildings, big colorful flowers, old bones, and New Mexico deserts, in a new way. The author has touched on some of the controversy elicited when O'Keeffe's pictures were first shown. A good introduction to the life of Georgia O'Keeffe. There is an afterword and a list of important dates to supplement the information in the text.
Children's Literature - Children's Literature
Gr 2-3An interesting look at a complex woman. The book concentrates on her beginnings as an artist, and discusses how she decided to work in her own style, and not in imitation of any other painter. Lowery follows her subject's career through her marriage to Alfred Stieglitz, her move to New Mexico, and her lifelong love of the desert, touching on the different objects O'Keeffe focused on in her artwork. Although there is a great deal of unattributed dialogue in the book, the words ring true to the attitudes and thoughts of the subject and her associates. The full-page illustrations have a bold, dramatic flair reminiscent of O'Keeffe's own painting style. Overall, a good, easy-to-read biography.Melissa Hudak, North Suburban District Library, Roscoe, IL
One of America's most popular artists is introduced for early readers in the On My Own Biographies series.
Lowery (Laurie Tells, 1994, etc.) does well in presenting O'Keeffe in simple language that captures the feelings of self- doubt and courage that were requisite for the young artist to break away from accepted styles and paint what was in her head. The book opens with O'Keeffe's staring at the stark desert of New Mexico, then flashes back to her earlier life as an art teacher. Her childhood in Wisconsin is covered only in an entry in the chronology. Her rather extraordinary marriage to Alfred Stiegletz is dealt with in a few brief sentences, although the scene in which he encounters O'Keeffe's abstract work for the first time is given strong dramatic weight (it launched her career as an artist). It is not easy to write simply well, but Lowery makes this a literary experience as well as a learning one. Newcomer Draper's illustrations portray the story of the woman well, admirably attempting renderings of O'Keeffe's best-known works in the backgrounds. Still, it's always a disappointment when no reproductions of an artist's work are included; this book has only a small black-and-white photo of O'Keeffe in front of one of her skull paintings at the end.