Georgia O’Keeffe and Friends at the MCA

By Patrick O’Neill, Staff Writer

Photo Source: Patrick O’Neill

This past week on Friday, February 15, a new exhibit opened at Denver’s Museum of Contemporary Art—Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting. The exhibit gave the unique opportunity to catch a glimpse of some original Georgia O’Keeffe paintings as well as viewing modern artists’ work. The theme of the exhibit was meant to show modern artists whose work resonates the Georgia O’Keeffe style and energy.

There’s some art words in here, so buckle up!

These pieces were particularly interesting in the sheer bold vibrancy of their colors. Many contained abstract structures and shapes which were emboldened by bright color and curving lines that launched the images forward to viewers. I found several paintings by contemporary artist, Loie Hollowell to be the most riveting in this exhibition. Loie Hollowell has mastered, in my opinion, the use of layering to create bold 3-Dimensional shapes on canvas, some of which actually stick out of the canvas making the pictures pop. Her use of color and form excellently portrays her otherworldly subject matter. Pictured below is The Land’s Part by Loie Hollowell which is visible in the Museum of Contemporary Art:

Loie Hollowell’s pieces mirror Georgia O’Keeffe’s with their use of shading and muted color to create a sense of mystery and intrigue.

Another piece that I particularly enjoyed was Lesley Vance’s Untitled piece. In retrospect, I found the coloring to be especially bold and pleasant to look at. Her use of rounded and twisting forms, additionally, seems to mirror the Georgia O’Keeffe style, so I can see why this piece was chosen for this exhibition. Certainly, it is a confusing and abstract piece but the mystery of it makes it all the more enjoyable. The piece exudes a certain hungry attitude which is evident in the almost 3D shapes that lay across the canvas. There’s something oddly fleshy about it.

On a plaque describing her work, Lesley Vance called Georgia O’Keeffe’s style, “elegant” with “serpentine lines” and “sinuous brushwork” which, “contain just the right amount of awkwardness to feel very human.” Indeed, the Vance pieces incorporate those abstract curves and turns, capturing an O’Keeffe-esque logic in their flow.

Pictured below is Untitled by Lesley Vance:

You can catch Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting at the Museum of Contemporary Art at 1485 Delgany Street, Denver from now until May 26.