Summer Days, 1936
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
Georgia O’Keeffe first visited New Mexico in 1929. Enthralled by its open skies and expansive landscape, she returned there almost every summer thereafter, transforming the region’s mountains, deserts, and adobe churches into iconic, crisply detailed paintings. To her, the bones she collected during her walks in the desert and subsequently depicted in her paintings signified the desert’s eternal beauty as well as the cycle of life—an interpretation she underscored by juxtaposing them with images of New Mexico’s mountains and desert flowers.