The Clouds of New Mexico

Once upon a time, when I was a teenager, I went to the Institute of Art in Chicago. You know how you sometimes have little experiences that you just never forget? I had one of those at the Institute. There’s no other way to describe it.  I walked through a gallery full of amazing Hindu statues. Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better than that I got the end of the hall and saw a large staircase. One starway went up the right and the other to the left. I chose the right side. Then I looked up and saw the largest, most amazing painting I’d ever seen. I don’t know how long I stood there gazing at this massive piece of art. I didn’t know who did it or what it was called so I went close and saw, ah, yes, Georgia O’Keefe. At the time I knew Georgia  O’Keefe did close-ups of flowers and bones, but I’d never seen anything else by her. And the name, Sky Above Clouds. I remember thinking, clouds don’t look like that.

Then I moved to New Mexico. Clouds do look like that🙂

Georgia's clouds

I recently went to Chicago again, but I had limited time so I did a quick run through of the museum and could only see a few things on my list of Most Important Things to See. I made sure to stop at the painting and sure enough, it was just as I remembered. Magnificent.

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