In the distance from Georgia O’Keeffe’s Abiquiu home, the cliffs she called ‘The White Place’ can be seen. She would drive there and camp, wander and draw and pick up a few rocks.
I had an O’Keeffe weekend visiting her Abiquiu home, photographing the Pedernal, walking around the White Place and finishing up at the O’Keeffe museum in Santa Fe. And I learned to spell ‘Abiquiu.’
Thoughts from that trip – I didn’t realize she was 61 when she moved to the Abiquiu house which was beautiful, but not easy living. She had a huge garden and dried or canned much of her food.
I took the guided tour of the house – the only way to see inside. No cameras, no sketchbooks, no writing paper allowed. I felt naked. But also alive to paying attention in a way that a camera prohibits. Not sure I want to spend more time without my camera, but it was a strong experience.
I admire O’Keeffe, but didn’t appreciate all of her art, especially some of the more abstract (she would never use that term) – one was just a curvy line down the canvas. And then I saw the view from her home of the road – that same curved line. Elegant. I got it.
Walking in the White Place picturing her camping and drawing helped me slow down and get a feel for the area. When I travel I rarely take time to sit and sketch or just look. I might do that now.
These thoughts have stayed with me for a few weeks now. The O’Keeffe immersion was strong and positive. And I can still spell Abiquiu.