Perhaps drawing on inspiration from the French Impressionists, O'Keeffe would study the Texan sunrises, sunsets and moonrises in huge detail, sitting outside for hours on end, or sometimes viewing from a window indoors. She wanted to have the light come upon her as much as she could and would also travel out to Palo Duro Canyon in order to experience the full impact of nature. Watercolours offered her an opportunity to work with a real freedom and she also liked the brighter colours delivered by them in comparison to the drawings that she had previously been working on. The timing of these paintings also make them highly significant, providing an example of her early development in which she was experimenting with different elements of nature, as well as several mediums prior to working predominantly with oils in later decades.
"...It is absurd the way i love this country - I am loving the plains more than ever it seems - and the sky - Anita you have never seen sky - it is wonderful..."
Each watercolour was 22cm wide by 30cm tall, put together on fairly brown, unprepared paper. She had produced some similar pieces in the previous year, but those were less abstract and used a great variety of colour. She continued to find new avenues of interest throughout her lifetime, famously focusing on flowers and leaves for a good decade, as well as the New Mexican landscape which brought in bright colours, that entirely suited her Modernist approach.
You will find all three together at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, a prestigious museum in Texas which hosts an excellent selection of national art from a variety of different styles. There is a good mixture of art galleries and museums in the US, some of which focus almost entirely on the achievements of American artists, whilst others have a much more varied offering, sometimes taking in African or Asian art as well, perhaps also antiquities from South America too. This establishment has a strong focus on American art from the 19th and 20th centuries, with the occasional crossover into British art because of the strong connection between the two in some art movements. John Singer Sargent, Thomas Eakins and Winslow Homer are three of the biggest names to be featured here, alongside the brilliance of O'Keeffe.