As COVID-19 spread around the world and slammed the brakes on the global economy, Alejandra Challapa Castro did something she never thought she would do: she put away her loom. An Aymara weaver, Challapa had a business making hand-woven alpaca scarves, shawls and capes as well as other items for more than 30 years. She was about to walk away from a skill she had first learned from her mother when she was 7 years old.
Georgia O’Keeffe decided as a child that she was going to be an artist when she grew up. Although she was unsure of what kind of art she would make, she later recalled, “I hadn’t a desire to make anything like the pictures I had seen.” Indeed, O’Keeffe’s long career was marked by ceaseless invention for which she received near constant acclaim, starting with her earliest paintings, which debuted in 1916 at New York’s famous 291 gallery, and continuing until her death, seven decades later, in 1986. In 1946 O’Keeffe was the subject of The Museum of Modern Art’s first retrospective exhibition devoted to a woman artist.