More generally, of her visits with O’Keeffe, Martin chronicled her elder’s unflagging enthusiasm with a mix of admiration and total fatigue. “Georgia was like that—very intense and exciting to be with, but she drained me,” she said. “When I left the room for a few minutes, I just had to lie down, right then and there.” She remembered another instance with laughter: “I found her overstimulating…When we left [O’Keeffe’s house], we went to Santa Fe and we went in the first bar we could find and we just drank. Glass after glass of beer. To recover.”
Despite their differences, all of Martin’s memories of O’Keeffe seem fond, even reverent. But at least one hints at what was perhaps Martin’s dissatisfaction with their relationship. In a 1995 interview, art critic Joan Simon asked Martin if she knew O’Keeffe. Martin responded succinctly: “I knew her in the ’40s when I was a student. But she forgot me when she got old.” Even so, her statement ended with laughter.
The two might have seen each other less as O’Keeffe aged, but their friendship embodies the importance of mentorship and support between female artists in the male-dominated art world—whether in the 1940s or today.