Georgia O'Keeffe

No. 8 - Special (Drawing No. 8)
1916

Not on view

Date
1916

Classification
Drawings

Medium
Charcoal on paper

Dimensions
Sheet (Irregular): 24 1/2 × 18 7/8in. (62.2 × 47.9 cm)

Accession number
85.52

Credit line
Purchase, with funds from the Mr. and Mrs. Arthur G. Altschul Purchase Fund

Rights and reproductions
© Georgia O'Keeffe Museum / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Georgia O’Keeffe was one of the first American artists to create abstract works of art, but instead of using the fragmented Cubist forms that inspired many American and European modernists, she developed her own brand of organic abstraction linked to rhythms found in the natural world. Beginning in 1915, O’Keeffe created a series of abstract drawings in charcoal, using forms that she had stored in her memory to transcribe intangible feelings that were beyond her conscious grasp—the “unknown” as she called it. In Drawing No. 8, the unfurling spiral form appears as a symbol of generation, of life emerging from a mysterious void. The spiral would become a recurring element of O’Keeffe’s work—a motif that she found in an array of subjects, including plants, flowers, water, and the curling smoke emitted by trains and skyscrapers.




Georgia O'Keeffe
13 works

View artist

Images and Permissions

Sunrise

Sunset

A 30-second online art project:
Kristin Lucas, Speculative Habitat for Sponsored Seabirds

Learn more