New Photography Acquisitions at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum; Santa Fe Japanese Intercultural Network’s Matsuri at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center
The prizes of a new exhibition at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum are a pair of photographs of the artist at the easel, an aspect of her life and work that she rarely permitted photographers to capture. “My greatest desire for acquiring the collection and still my favorite photographs are two that show O’Keeffe in the act of painting,” said Carolyn Kastner, curator of New
Photography Acquisitions . “There is one each by Ansel Adams and Alfred Stieglitz, which are the only photographers she allowed to show her at work.” The exhibition, opening on Friday, March 27, offers a selection from the museum’s collection of more than 2,000 photographs, including the newest acquisitions.
New York photographer and gallerist Stieglitz began photographing O’Keeffe in 1917 and created more than 300 images of the artist before his death in 1946. Other Stieglitz photos in the new exhibition depict intimate moments at Lake George, New York, where the couple spent summers and autumns at the Stieglitz family home. Also included in New Photography
Acquisitions are prints by artists and photographers George Daniell, Philippe Halsman, Arnold Newman, and Todd Webb, as well as work by
Doris Bry, who was O’Keeffe’s agent and dealer, and a few snapshots by unidentified photographers.
The exhibit shows a collection purchased by the museum in 2014, Kastner said. Seven decades ago, O’Keeffe selected these very photos for James Johnson Sweeney, the curator of her 1946 retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art. “All of these photographs started in Georgia O’Keeffe’s own collection,” Kastner said. “She sent some to Sweeney after he retired from MoMA and was working on a book about her [which was never published], and the rest she had to the end of her life. Then they went to the Georgia O’Keeffe Foundation, and the foundation gifted them to us.
“Ansel Adams took one we already have of her with bones. The one that came from the Sweeney collection was probably taken a second before or after that one, and she’s holding the same bones. It’s two friends playing in the field. So they’ve come back together. Ansel Adams and Todd Webb were both friends of O’Keeffe, and their photographs show a more informal relationship — like snapshots — but the images are gorgeous because they were talented photographers.”
“New Photography Acquisitions” hangs through Sept. 26. Also on view is “Modernism Made in New Mexico,” through April 30. The O’Keeffe (217 Johnson St.; 505-946-1000) is open daily. Entrance is by museum admission.
— Paul Weideman
Turning Japanese: A festival for the senses
In Japan, the sakura , or cherry blossom, the nation’s national flower, symbolizes the impermanence of life and the arrival of spring, which have often inspired different forms of artistic expression. Santa Fe’s annual Matsuri (a Japanese festival or holiday), hosted by the local chapter of the Japanese Intercultural Network (Santa Fe JIN), takes the delicate bloom as its theme for 2015. This year’s daylong event takes place at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center (201 W. Marcy St.) on Saturday, March 28, from 10 a.m. (doors open at 9:30 a.m.) to 5 p.m. A highlight will be Ringtaro Tateishi, a performer and teacher of traditional Japanese taiko drumming who was previously the artistic director of world-renowned taiko group Ondekoza. He goes onstage at 2 p.m.
Other festivities include a 2:45 p.m. performance of favorites by the group Taiko Sol and morning and afternoon demonstrations of the iaido, aikido, karate, and kyudo forms of Japanese martial arts. Binational cultural association Chado New Mexico gives a tea ceremony in the facility’s Coronado Room at 11 a.m., serving matcha (a finely powdered green tea) and traditional sweets and also offering workshops on making matcha. Cosplay characters — ubiquitous in Japanese pop culture — will be present throughout the day. In addition, a silent auction begins at 1:45 p.m. Bento box lunc s, sushi, and other Japanese foods are available for purchase, and booths will offer kimonos, ceramics, Japanese woodblock prints, and more for sale. Tickets, $5, are available at the door; children twelve and under are admitted free of charge. A portion of ticket sales supports the Japan Aid Foundation, which provides relief for damages from the 2011 tsunami, and also the Santa Fe JIN’s scholarship program. For a complete schedule of events, visit Santa Fe JIN at www.santafejin.org. — Michael Abatemarco
Alfred Stieglitz (1864-1946):
Georgia O’Keeffe [Seated on ground, paintbrush in hand], 1918; right, Stieglitz:
Georgia O’Keeffe [Carrying a canvas], 1920s; both gelatin silver prints flushmounted on card; images courtesy the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum