ALBUQUERQUE, NM—The art world is abuzz following the recent discovery of a long-lost Georgia O'Keeffe watercolor.
Spreading Tulip, painted by O'Keeffe in 1926, was missing for more than 70 years before being discovered Monday in the attic of Regina Pelphrey, 82, of Las Cruces, NM.
Art historians are hailing the watercolor, valued at $10 million, as one of the most significant art finds in decades.
"This is an extraordinary work, one of the finest examples of O'Keeffe's legendary pink period," said Genevieve Reynolds, curator of Albuquerque's Museum Of The American Southwest, where the painting is being displayed.
"Note the moist, delicate lips of the flower, which are opening wide as if ready to be pollinated. Thirsty for contact, this ripe young bud seems to be eagerly spreading itself open, as if to invite us, the viewer, to partake of its sweet nectar."
Virginia Young of the Art Institute of Chicago agreed. "Spreading Tulip represents a sublime creative peak for Georgia O'Keeffe, a glorious climax to her most fertile period."