The "Black Place" was the name Georgia O'Keeffe gave to one of her favorite painting sites. It is located in the northwest portion of the BLM designated Lybrook Fossil Area (commonly referred to as the Lybrook Badlands), about 150 miles northwest of her home in Abiquiu. As one drives along U.S. 550, one can see a stretch of desolate gray and black hills that the artist said looked from a distance like "a mile of elephants."

Over a period of fourteen years, from 1936 to 1949, her visits to the "Black Place" sparked a torrent of work that was almost unparalleled in her career. Between 1944 and 1945 alone, she completed six canvases, including Black Place II, one very large pastel, and at least nine pencil sketches.

  • ➠ More about the Lybrook Geology and Area

  • The Black Place
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    Black Place
    Georgia O'Keeffe in front of her Black Place.
    Photo by Maria Chabot (1944).
    Black Place
    Photo of the Same Location, 75 years later.
    Photo by EMKotyk (2019).
    Black Place
    Georgia O'Keeffe's Oil on Canvas, Black Place I (1944).
    Black Place
    Photo of the Same Location in 2019.
    Black Place
    Georgia O'Keeffe's Oil on Canvas 'Black Place II' (1944).
    Black Place
    Photo of the Same Location in 2019.

    Many more interesting sites to see within the "Black Place."
    Black Place
    Moon Over Black Hills.
    Black Place
    Overlooking the Black Place from Mesa Above.
    Black Place
    Canyon in Black Place.
    Black Place
    Sink Holes within the Hills.
    Black Place
    Geode.
    Black Place
    Canyon in Black Place.
    Black Place
    Strange Rocks in the Canyons.
    Black Place
    Broken Heart Rock.
    Black Place
    Not Everything is Black and White, Lichen on a Rock.
    Black Place
    Life does exist in the Black Place.
    Black Place
    Raven Rock being tickled.
    Black Place
    Kyle Rock (Gru's Dog).
    Photos by EMKotyk