Georgia O’Keeffe Museum Revealed as Buyer of ‘The Barns’ for $3.3 Million at Christie’s
It shows buildings on Alfred Stieglitz's estate.
The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum has revealed that it was the buyer of The Barns, Lake George (1926), last week at Christie’s New York, where it bought the painting for just $3.3 million. It came from the estate of Marion “Kippy” Bolton Stroud, the artist and philanthropist who died in 2015.
Before being shown at the Kunsthaus Zurich in 2003–04, the painting had not been on view since 1954, when it was displayed at the gallery at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. It had previously been included in her 1946 retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. It will go on view at the Santa Fe museum within the next few months, said director Robert A. Kret in a statement.
O’Keeffe, beloved for her flower paintings and her depictions of the American Southwest, holds the record for a work by a female artist at $44.4 million, set at Sotheby’s New York in November 2014 with her 1932 flower painting Jimson Weed/White Flower No. 1. The purchase price for The Barns, Lake George makes it the fifteenth-priciest O’Keeffe canvas, according to the artnet Price Database.
The same work, measuring just under three feet wide, had come to auction at Sotheby’s New York in November 2001 and fetched $1.1 million, again according to the artnet Price Database.
The painting depicts a group of buildings on the upstate New York estate of O’Keeffe’s husband, photographer and dealer Alfred Stieglitz.
“The barn is a very healthy part of me—there should be more of it—it is something that I know too—it is my childhood,” the artist wrote, according to the museum, referring to her upbringing on a Wisconsin farm.
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