Thursday, July 14, 2011

Red Poppy

Red Poppy by Georgia O'Keefe
Georgia O'Keefe's work is deeply incarnational and sacramental to me. Now, if she were alive today, she might not choose those words for herself. She was raised with a nominal connection to the Episcopal Church, but was not religious in the classic sense of the term. Painting was her ritual, it seems.

Whether bleached skulls of bulls or vibrant flora, she sees beyond the surface, to the deeper beauty therein. Like most artists she has that broadness of vision. She captures movement, almost dancing it is, within what many call the mundane. Whether alive or dead, there is Life. It is from there that the Beloved speaks...

The poppy in this striking painting praises God by being exactly what it is in the moment. The painting captures this clearly, and it, itself, likewise is a prayer on canvas. Like an icon, praise passes to the Prototype, the Artist Who grounds all being. 

The real flower undoubtedly withered at some point after it was painted, surrendering to the natural process, but not devoid of God's presence as it lay on the ground, color faded and cracking, becoming one with it again.


Thom, SFO said...

Beautiful. I really needed this tonight.

Br. Yossi, CoS Cam said...

Thanks be to God, my friend!