A Look at Georgia O’Keeffe’s Painting Black Cross Essay

Published: 2021-09-11 10:15:11
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Category: Painting

Type of paper: Essay

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The artist was forty-one years old and already at the height of popular acclaim. Coffee found a new, dramatic world and painted “Black Cross, New Mexico” in the summer of the same year _ At first glance, the painting can be rather obtuse vivid such a definitive black cross blocking a beautiful sunrise; however, after spending some time With the painting, the canvas presents its story. Georgia Coffee had great admiration for the Catholic blanket spread about New Mexico and the abundant amount Of roses representing departed souls.
This particular primitive cross was put together by four nails Which Coffee painted a slightly lighter color Of black, giving the cross an aesthetic beauty. Just beyond the black cross, she began her depiction of the distance to the infinite horizon with the contrasting power of white rolling grounds, nearly fluid-like. Within the human soul, there lies an innate desire for that infinite horizon. Upon seeing the ocean with no end or watching a tumble weed roll across the infinite plains of the Texas panhandle, he human soul is reunited with a feeling of freedom.
Coffee understands this human desire, She paints the hills giving the eyes the freedom to reach for the infinite horizon and therefore, sets the soul on flight, but not too quickly. The dark, sort of ominous colors of the Southwest’s sleeping hills keep the soul at bay by enveloping mysterious dark hues of purple, red, green and orange. These true Southwest colors are painted in harmony with one of nature’s grandest performances, the sunrise. Her captivating colors seem to glow as the sunlight ones and shades ascend above the horizon, kindling warmth and comfort.
Coffee manifests not only the finality of night with the brush of red just above the horizon, but also a new dawn with a precisely painted yellow stroke right before you come to the cross’s definitive black. Although, this time, the eye does not sense ominous death, but instead, awakened beauty. Coffee’s imaginative creativity pushes the eye up past the black to the embrace of a nearly euphoric sky. The cross now looks out towards a hopeful ray Of yellows and light blues tit only the moon to remind us of the night that once was.
In one painting, the skilled artist has mastered a respectful death as well as a faithful dawn just by harnessing the beautiful nuances of New Mexico enchanted lands and portraying them in paint strokes. Georgia Coffee most certainly introduced the captivating Southwest to a broader audience, especially that of the East. Her use of colors and contradicting subjects within a single piece of artwork gave sophisticated and modern realism a nudge towards actual storytelling.

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